China’s economic rise has brought fortunes to many Chinese people, but there are still millions of Chinese living below the poverty line. We show you just how wide can be among ordinary people in China.
Jia Haixia was not born in Guangzhou. She’s one of the tens of thousands of people who move to the booming city every year to share in its prosperity.
Jia Haixia said, "Guangzhou has flourishing economy, and offers many opportunities for people in my field of expertise, which is foreign legal affairs and capital management, I think this is a place for people to realise their dreams."
These people bring energy to the city. Over the past decade, the city has changed in front of their eyes. Whether it’s the economy, the environment, traffic or social infrastructure, the development of Guangzhou is in the fast lane.
Jia said, "We’ve seen the area change. When we first bought this apartment, there was no highway or subway. Now it is much more convenient, the district is as beautiful as a park now, we have all kinds of shopping centers, hospitals and schools."
Over 2200 kilometers away, people are living a starkly different life. With a few days to go until the spring ploughing season begins, this family sits down together for a late lunch. Boiled potatoes and a bowl of pickled cabbage is on the menu, a meal that hasn’t changed for days. Household appliances are also years old and in need of repair.
Li Yufeng, villager of Huining county, Gansu Province, said, "This tape recorder is older than our youngest son, we bought it nearly 30 years ago and it’s no longer functioning now, but these thermoses seem to be OK to use. We don’t think we can afford to replace everything in this room. "
The couple is left wondering why they remain so poor after having put in decades of hard work.
Li Wei, villager of Huining county, Gansu Province, said, “We had some savings...about 10 thousand yuan. But that was before I got colon cancer. That money was meant to be spent on refurbishing our house. But endless chemotherapies have taken away every penny we have, we even had to borrow money to cover the medical bills.”
At the end of our visit, Li Wei told us he won’t be throwing away his farm tools anytime soon.