Fujian province, the closest mainland province to Taiwan, will support 100 rural construction projects carried out by people from Taiwan every year in the province to promote rural vitalization and integrated development across the Taiwan Straits.
County and township governments, village committees and State-owned enterprises are encouraged to learn from Taiwan people's experiences in community building and village improvements.
They will receive a subsidy of 500,000 yuan ($71,700) a year for each rural building project employing Taiwan teams, according to a recent regulation issued by five provincial departments to boost cross-Straits cooperation.
Taiwan teams launching companies on the mainland, with talent in architecture, cultural and creative industries, will be introduced to rejuvenate the environment, cultivate industry and provide other services based on local conditions in the countryside of Fujian.
They are also encouraged to undertake such projects with their counterparts in Fujian and work in villages together so as to learn from each other. The service term of each project shall be no less than one year, and Taiwan teams shall provide guidance for no less than 100 days per year to ensure the teams live and work with local residents in villages.
The regulation was made based on the province's experience in the past years as growing numbers of designers and architects from Taiwan are engaged in rural rejuvenation work in Fujian.
Since 2018, the province has been exploring cooperation between the two sides in rural construction with supporting policies rolled out, according to the Fujian Housing and Urban-Rural Development Department.
The mainland has a large market and prospects, while Taiwan had an early start in rural construction ideas and experience in the field, the department said.
About 100 Taiwan teams involving more than 300 designers and architects have been involved in rural building projects in Fujian, covering about 300 villages, it said.
One of those involved, Tseng Chih-ying, from Taipei, came to Fujian in 2018 with her team of young designers from Taiwan and has been devoted to rural vitalization projects since then.
Her team has renovated old buildings for villagers in the countryside and also filmed documentaries in counties and villages to record the local history, including stories about older craftsmen and ancient buildings, according to Tseng.
To encourage more cooperation, within two years, a number of villages and counties with such projects will be selected and developed to act as exemplary models in cross-Straits cooperation and the integrated development of the two sides, according to the document.
To guide more Taiwan people and enterprises to participate in the mainland's rejuvenation of rural areas, a pilot zone for integrated rural development across the Straits was set up in Sanming, a city rich in forestry resources in Fujian, recently.
The cross-Straits cooperation in rural rejuvenation with architects from the two sides working in villages has been adopted by other provincial regions including Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Ningxia.