Programmers boost information economy

The information economy in Chinese cities is developing thanks to the growing number of computer programmers.

Programmers in a company in Hainan province. (Photo/Xinhua)

With information technology developing so rapidly, the term “programmer” these days is virtually synonymous with high income. According to data, in cities’ private sectors, information transmission, software and information technology services is the industry with the highest average annual incomes with 85,301 yuan ($12,377).

Information transmission, software and information technology services is a typical high value-added industry with advantages in technology, talents and capital, said Fu Yifu, a senior researcher at the Suning Institute of Finance.

Fu added that both private Internet companies and system integrators selling software have the ability to collect high profits from downstream companies, resulting in high income for programmers.

Nowadays, with various industries becoming increasingly dependent on computer applications, a large number of programmers are involved in design, construction, application, maintenance and security.

Statistics from the Fourth National Economic Census in Beijing show that the Chinese capital is home to as many as 1,389,000 IT-related employees, equivalent to the number in Shanghai and Shenzhen combined. There are about 700,000 employees in information transmission, software and information technology services in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Guangzhou ranked fourth with 537,400 employees, and the number of employees in the field in Hangzhou has also reached about 400,000.

Big companies such as Baidu, Meituan and Didi are located in Beijing; Tencent and Huawei are based in Shenzhen; Alibaba is located in Hangzhou, and Pinduoduo is based in Shanghai. With their technical strength, resource integration ability and regional radiation ability, many Internet giants have attracted a large number of “programmers”.

According to data from Tencent’s open platform, an average of 12,000 new companies have been registered every day in recent years, at an annual growth rate of 33.74 percent. Experts say a steady stream of new companies in China provide a broad field for “programmers” to give full play to their skills.

Sports products see consumption growth

The COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in explosive growth in the consumption of sports-related commodities in China, and the Chinese market still has huge potential for further development.


According to e-commerce platform data, retail sales of sports-related commodities showed a surge in growth in the first half of this year, with sales of treadmills and yoga products up 168 percent and 135 percent respectively compared with the same period last year, while new fitness equipment such as electric hula hoops and rowing machines have also become hot-selling items.

In addition, the rapid development of new business types, such as online fitness and online sport events, has also given rise to more new growth points in the sports industry.

According to big data jointly released by SUNING, SUNING Sports and PP Sports, in the first half of the year, retail sales of sports products increased by 152 percent compared with the same period last year, while fitness equipment, treadmills and other home sports equipment increased significantly, up 280.6 percent and 179 percent respectively over the same period last year.

At present, the added value of China’s sports industry only accounts for about 1 percent of the total GDP, but in developed countries, the added value of the sports industry accounts for 2 to 3percent of GDP. In other words, the market scale of the domestic sports industry still has plenty of room for further development.

By 2025, the total scale of China’s sports industry will reach 5 trillion yuan (about $0.73 trillion), according to the Several Opinions of the State Council on Accelerating the Development of Sports Industry and Promoting Sports Consumption. Data also shows that the number of sports-related enterprises registered in China has increased rapidly in the past decade, reaching 1.566 million in 2019, an increase of 109 percent over the same period in 2018.

“Platform + content + derivative economy” will be the direction taken by China’s sports industry in the future, said He Wenyi, deputy director of the National Sports Industry Research Base under Peking University, adding that finding ways to integrate all kinds of resources to achieve substantial increase in value will be a question that all sports industry practitioners need to think about.

Chinese mother enters college with son

A Chinese mother from Siziwang banner, Ulanqab, north China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region, will be going to college along with her son this year, after they both took China’s college entrance exam, the gaokao.

(Photo/Inner Mongolia Daily)

Narina, who is 43 years old, scored 404 in the exam, well above the minimum score of 344 required for admission to the second batch of universities for undergraduate education in Inner Mongolia for liberal arts students who were taught in Mongolian.

She was eventually admitted to the tourism management program of one of the first batch of universities for undergraduate education at the Inner Mongolia University of Finance and Economics, as the region lowered the minimum score for admission on August 19 to recruit more students for these universities.

Narina’s son, a science student, scored 520, the highest out of all the science students taught in Mongolian in the city of Ulanqab.

But many have asked why Narina would take the gaokao when she is already in her forties.

In 1997, when she was a grade three high school student, Narina gave up the opportunity to sit the gaokao, as her mother suffered a serious leg disease and was no longer able to take care of herself.

After leaving school, she had to take care of her mother at home while also tending to their cattle and sheep.

(Photo/Inner Mongolia Daily)

In 2001, China’s Ministry of Education lifted the restrictions on the maximum age and marital status of candidates for gaokao.

In 2011, as the system became more flexible, anyone with a high school graduation certificate or equivalent education level could apply to sit the gaokao.

Feeling excited about this change, she bought learning materials and prepared herself for the exam.

However, as her daughter was still in kindergarten and her husband would have to take care of all the housework and production by himself if she spent all her time studying, she let the opportunity go once again.

This year, she finally took the exam and realized her dream of going to college.

“I knew my son would take the gaokao this year, so I decided to take it together with him. When I told my family about my decision, they were all very supportive. My son prepared the materials for me. I also took classes in Hohhot for the exam,” Narina recalled, saying that she enjoyed the feeling of the old days when she was preparing for gaokao.

“Some might say, ‘You’re a herdswoman, why do you need to go to college?’ Well, I think herdsmen also need to enhance our strengths and keep up with the times. Becoming a college student has always been my dream. Even if I can’t find a suitable job after graduation, I think it’s still worth it because I will be a real college graduate,” she said joyfully.

Foreign investors upbeat about China

Foreign investors hold stable expectations of Chinese market
Chinese and German technicians test products together at Joma Polytec Plastic Parts (Kunshan) Co., Ltd. in German Industrial Park located in Kunshan, east China’s Jiangsu province, August 3. (Photo by Hua Xuegen/People’s Daily Online)

Foreign direct investment (FDI) into the Chinese mainland, in actual use, expanded by 15.8 percent year on year in July, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce (MOC).

Foreign investors’ expectations of and confidence in the Chinese market have been stable while signaling sound momentum of growth, suggested the data.

Against the backdrop of the globally spreading COVID-19 epidemic and gloomy transnational investment, the performance of FDI inflow in July was particularly precious.

The great growth in actually utilized FDI in China couldn’t have been realized without the strong resilience and huge potential of the Chinese economy.

“We will further increase our investment in China and open more stores steadily. We will do all we can to bring the number of our stores in China to over 3,000 by the end of 2020,” said Zhang Sheng, vice president of Lawson (China) Holdings Inc.

Due to the epidemic, Lawson stores in some office buildings and scenic spots have seen a decrease in their passenger flow, yet sales in stores located in communities have still grown rapidly, Zhang disclosed.

“With the store being located 100 meters away from my home, I can now buy daily necessities conveniently,” said Huang He, a resident in Yuzhong district, southwest China’s Chongqing municipality, while waiting in a line for payment before the checkout counter of a newly opened Lawson store.

Three stores of the Japanese convenience store chain were opened in Chongqing on July 15 alone.

At present, the Chinese economy is showing a steady recovery, with the decline in total retail sales of consumer goods narrowing significantly while online retail sales of physical goods growing at a relatively fast pace.

China’s manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) rose to 51.1 in July, which, while being 0.2 percentage points higher than that in the previous month, indicated that the result has remained above the critical 50-point threshold that separates expansion from contraction for the fifth consecutive month.

As facts have shown, China is still an appealing investment destination, and the country’s efforts to promote all-round opening-up have made it more attractive to foreign investors.

AstraZeneca Plc, a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical company, has recently put into operation an international life science innovation campus in Wuxi, east China’s Jiangsu province.

AstraZeneca (Wuxi) International Life Science Innovation Campus, the innovation campus, which was jointly established by AstraZeneca, the Wuxi municipal government and Wuxi National Hi-Tech District, has attracted 17 domestic and foreign companies including Japanese electronics manufacturer Omron Corporation.

China has been committed to opening its door wider to the world, which generates new opportunities and platforms for the development and innovation of foreign enterprises, according to Leon Wang, executive vice-president, international and China president with AstraZeneca.

The company will continue to cultivate the Chinese market, and create an open and innovative health ecosystem, Wang noted, adding that AstraZeneca will build regional characteristic innovation centers in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Chengdu and other cities of China.

Since the beginning of this year, China has continued to show its strong determination to adhere to opening-up to the world with practical actions.

The country has promoted the construction of the Hainan free trade port, held the China Import and Export Fair online and is making preparations for the 3rd China International Import Expo to be held in November.

The more open China has become a good destination for the investment and businesses of global companies.

Sixty-five percent of the surveyed members of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China (EUCCC) consider China as the most important investment destination or one of the top three destinations for investment in the world, suggested a report released by the EUCCC on June 10.

The country has also continuously improved its business environment to attract more foreign investors.

Thanks to an innovative mode enabling online cross-border transfer of registration documents, some foreign shareholders have registered a company in China without leaving their own country.

According to the vice general manager of the newly established technology company in Suzhou Industrial Park in Suzhou, Jiangsu province, they were really worried about the registration of their company at first, but it turned out that the whole process was handled smoothly.

Due to the outbreak of the COVID-19, foreign shareholders of the company couldn’t enter China to go through all the formalities to register the company.

After learning about the case, Suzhou Industrial Park immediately contacted the Bank of China Singapore Branch and asked the latter to verify the qualifications of the company’s shareholders. After due communication and examination of relevant application materials, the company got its business license.

China has continuously boosted investment facilitation in the country, further simplified the examination and approval procedures and requirements for enterprises’ production and operation, improved the quality and efficiency of enterprise-related services, and put into effect the foreign investment law and a regulation on optimizing the business environment.

In recent years, the country has made active efforts to create a market-oriented, law-based and internationalized business environment and continuously make it easier for foreign-funded enterprises to invest in China.

In June, China unveiled its 2020 negative list for foreign investment market access and the 2020 negative list for foreign investment in pilot free trade zones.

The number of sectors that are off-limits for foreign investors has been reduced by 17.5 percent to 33 in the 2020 version of the negative list from 40 in the 2019 version.

Meanwhile, the number of prohibited industries in pilot free trade zones has been cut to 30 from 37 by 18.9 percent.

Young people focus more on health

Coffee with goji berries used to be a joke drink, but not in today’s health-conscious era. A survey shows that presently, more than 90 percent of Chinese young people born after 1990 are conscious about maintaining their health, and more than half of them attach great importance to it.

Tongrentang, a Chinese pharmaceutical company founded in 1669, has introduced a new type of coffee to meet this trend.

Currently, there are two Tongrentang stores in Beijing that provide this “herbal coffee”. One is the flagship store in Daxing, which has three floors. In addition to food and beverages, there is also a diagnosis and treatment area, dispensing area and pharmacy.

The other store is located in Chaoyang district. In addition to coffee, the store also provides health soup, porridge, pastry, and other packaged retail goods, as well as medical consultations and preparations of medicine.

In fact, Tongrentang is not the only company offering coffee for health maintenance. In 2019, Pacific Coffee, a coffee shop group originating in Hong Kong, and Dong E E Jiao, a brand that specializes in the manufacturing and marketing of Chinese traditional medicines and health products, launched a series of drinks called “Ejiao Coffee”.


Sales of this series of new products from stores in seven cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, are more than 30 percent higher than those of its conventional products. Nowadays, the middle-aged and elderly are not the only group of people interested in maintaining their health, as this has already become a hot topic for young people in recent years along with deteriorating health conditions.

A recent report on the trend of health maintenance and young people’s consumption habits released by the data center of media group Yicai shows that more than half of China’s post-90s generation suffer from hair loss and impaired eyesight. At the same time, about 40 percent of the post-90s generation are plagued by obesity and declining exercise ability, and 30 percent suffer from declines in immunity.

In addition, due to the COVID-19 outbreak this year, the concept of public health is increasing, and young people no longer just focus on food, clothing, electronics and entertainment, but are paying more attention to health and health-related products.

According to the report, at present, more than 90 percent of the post-90s generation are conscious about maintaining health, and more than half of them attach great importance to it.

Furthermore, young people now prefer “ready-to-eat” nourishing foods. As a result, many traditional medicine and snack brands have launched products such as independently packaged black sesame pills.

Platform economy thrives, benefits people

Platform economy in China brings convenience, benefits to people
Zhao Hengliang, a chemistry teacher at the Hengshui No.2 High School in Hengshui, north China’s Hebei province, gives lessons to students via live-streaming platform during the COVID-19 epidemic. (Photo by Yan Nan/People’s Daily Online)

During this year’s June 18 mid-year online shopping carnival in China, the sales of an air conditioner of Chinese home appliance manufacturer Midea Group exceeded 10 million yuan (about $1.45 million) within merely half an hour.

Thanks to the consumption-related big data provided by Chinese e-commerce giant, Midea Group’s newly developed products can better suit the needs of consumers and therefore win favor with more people.

From June 1 to 18, a total of 269.2 billion yuan worth of orders had been placed via, and 187 brands saw their own sales on the platform exceeding 100 million yuan.

China’s platform economy has grown rapidly in recent years, when new industries, new models and forms of business have thrived across the country.

By the end of last year, the number of digital marketplace firms in China whose market value was over $1 billion increased to 193. Meanwhile, the total market value of online marketplaces had grown to $2.35 trillion, with the compound annual growth rate in the previous five years averaging 31.1 percent.

In 2019, Internet platform operators had saw rapid growth in service revenues, according to a white paper on digital economy development in China in 2020 by the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT).

Operators of Internet platforms providing services for production, daily life, science and technology innovation and public affairs achieved a total business income of 319.3 billion yuan, up 24.9 percent on a year-on-year basis, revealed the white paper.

The booming business of platform economy in China is in fact a natural result of the new benefits and convenience these platforms have brought to people.

Internet-based platforms in such areas as real estate, live-streaming, online education and telemedicine have grown rapidly and greatly benefited people’s lives in all aspects.

A citizen surnamed Jiang in Dalian, northeast China’s Liaoning province, has recently signed a purchasing contract with the owner of a house through China’s online housing platform Beike within 15 minutes.

Jiang wanted to sign as soon as possible the contract on the purchase of a second-hand house she felt satisfied with, but the owner of the house lives in another city most of the time. Thanks to the third-party online platform Beike, Jiang was able to sign the contract without having to meet face-to-face with the owner.

Platform economy has integrated deeply into the national economy of China and generated new driving forces for industrial upgrading.

With the help of Meicai, a fresh food e-commerce platform in China, Zhang Baoli, a potato grower in Weichang Manchu and Mongolian autonomous county in north China’s Hebei province, has established a potato cooperative, which follows uniform standards throughout the process of production and receives instruction and training from agricultural experts.

While Zhang often worried about the sale of his products in the past, now he even receives orders for his potatoes from the big data-driven platform of Meicai before they are dug out from the fields.

With its planting area increasing from less than ten hectares to more than 67 hectares, Zhang’s cooperative has so far helped several hundred local people of more than 80 households shake off poverty.

Besides agriculture, online platforms can also be helpful for various other sectors. By serving as a source of new modes of organization and important external resources, these platforms can help traditional companies in various fields solve problems such as fragmented procurement, poor research and development capabilities, and product homogeneity, improve production and operation efficiency, and accelerate the transition of companies to high-quality development.

In the meantime, platform economy has brought new opportunities to employment and entrepreneurship.

Due to the COVID-19 epidemic, a well-known restaurant with 22 years of history in Guangzhou, capital of south China’s Guangdong province, was almost closed down.

It was by rolling out takeout service on Internet platforms that the restaurant gradually revitalized its business.

Within just one month, the orders of the restaurant soared from less than 10 per day to more than 200 orders per day.

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, together with the State Administration for Market Regulation and the National Bureau of Statistics, unveiled new professions in the country, many of which are closely related to Internet platforms, such as delivery personnel for online orders, online marketers and online learning consultants.

Experts pointed out that China’s platform economy has played a major role in optimizing resource allocation, promoting industrial upgrading, expanding the consumer market and facilitating employment.

It is believed that platform economy will continue to unleash greater vitality and potential in the future.

Tibetan township gets rid of poverty

Tibetan township gets rid of poverty, embraces prosperity
A woman milks a yak. (Photo by Li Changyu/People’s Daily)

August is cold in Mcdika, a township in Jiali county, Nagqu of southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region. The average altitude of the township stands at over 5,100 meters, and the highest pasture of the alpine township, located in Kaire village, is 5,280 meters above the sea level.

Wearing a crimson Tibetan robe and a felt hat, Tsangpa from Kaire village looks vibrant. Last year, the man’s family earned nearly 100,000 yuan ($14,455), from small business, the bonus of the village’s cooperative, part-time jobs and the government’s grassland eco-compensation.

However, Tsangpa family was still a registered impoverished household before 2015, with an annual per capita income of only 2,000 yuan.

The change came from the poverty alleviation policies launched by Mcdika township. In 2015, Pasang Tsering was appointed the Party chief of the township, and at that time, the township was home to 380 impoverished households that totaled 1,900 people and accounted for 37 percent of the township’s population. Local herdsmen grazed their livestock separately, and their income was low.

To make the grazing more intensive and into an industry, Pasang Tsering encouraged villages in the township to establish cooperatives, and held training sessions to teach vocational skills to the herdsmen.

After years of efforts, every village in the township has established a pasture cooperative, and 20 economic cooperation organizations have been built, including cow dung processing plant, housekeeping service center, and gas and petrol station.

When Kaire’s pasture cooperative was founded in 2017, Tsangpa invested all his 18 yaks in it, and his wife also started working for it. After two years, Tsangpa’s family received not only 12,800 yuan of bonus, but also a heifer. Besides, the cooperative also freed Tsangpa from grazing the livestock, so he worked out of town for extra income, which multiplied the man’s earning in recent years. So far, all impoverished people in Mcdika have shaken off poverty just like Tsangpa has.

To address the high altitude, harsh natural conditions, weak economic foundation and simple industrial structure, Nagqu has exploited its advantages in the grazing industry, establishing grazing companies and an interests-sharing mechanism that combines leading enterprises, county-level grazing companies, cooperatives and impoverished households. The mechanism links all sections on the household-, village-, township-, county- and municipal-levels, and improves the efficiency of poverty alleviation.

Garde is a leading graziery company in Seni district of Naqu. It has an organic graziery demonstration base located 4,500 meters above the sea level on the Garde Plateau.

“The pastures were scattered before, so both the storage and sales of the fresh milk were difficult,” said Garda, head of a cooperative from Dhasa township. He introduced that the base has distributed thermal-insulation steel buckets to the herdsmen, which largely spurred their enthusiasm for production.

According to Mingata, an executive of the demonstration base, since the base started operation on January 2018, it has created total income of over 7.5 million yuan for 812 impoverished households from 76 poverty-stricken villages who supplied milk, fertilizers and meadows and worked for the base.

“After years of efforts, Nagqu now has 1,540 cooperatives of agriculture and graziery, radiating 322,900 people from 73,500 households,” said Ao Liuquan, Party chief of Nagqu. These cooperatives generated total revenue of 366 million yuan last year, distributing a bonus of 199 million yuan to the people. Besides, they also created 19,100 local jobs, and increased income of 121 million yuan for 82,700 people.

“To work hard independently, and to overcome hardships rather than enduring them.” That’s the slogan of local poverty alleviation cadres, as well as the only way to get rid of poverty.

Young people protect forest in NW China

A group of young people have made it their mission to protect a primary forest in northwest China’s Qinghai province.

The Make River (Photo courtesy of the Make River Forest Bureau)

With an average elevation of 3,100 meters and an area of more than 100,000 hectares, the Make River forest, located in Banma county, Qinghai province, is a primary forest with the highest elevation and largest area in the Three Rivers Headwaters Region.

Thanks to the efforts of a group of young people, the primary forest, once a wood base in the province, is being turned into a key natural forest resources protection area in Qinghai.

About 233 rangers in the forest are in charge of forest inspection and management, and around 30 percent of them are under 30 years old. Each ranger usually walks about 9 kilometers in the mountains every day and works more than 300 days a year.

“My duties vary from forest management and fire prevention to disease and insect pest prevention reports and wildlife monitoring,” said one 30-year-old ranger in the forest.

A young man controls the weeds (Photo/People’s Daily)

Since he started working in the forest about three years ago, Zhang Qicheng, a forestry graduate from Southwest Forestry University, has documented the species and conditions in each area of the forest and accumulated a great deal of experience in tree planting.

“My job is to make preparations for tree planting, and observe the conditions of trees, both to help them grow better and healthier,” said Zhang.

Seventy-two regular employees at the forest have a bachelor’s degree or above, accounting for nearly half of the total number of employees, which resulted in a great improvement in the quality of the trees.

To date, the total number of transplanted seedlings in the forest has increased to 4 million from 400,000 back in 2017, with the retention rate of new seedlings rising to 85 percent from 30 percent during the same period.

Due to the high altitude, few tree species can be planted in the area, and it is difficult for those transplanted from outside the region to survive, which makes the cultivation of independent species particularly important.

Young people have played a major role in species cultivation, said Ma Yinglong, an official with the Make River forestry bureau.

Since 2014, the number of seedlings planted to meet demand has increased from 100,000 to 900,000 and the inventory of various seedlings has increased from 3 million to 14 million, Ma added.

Ecotourism helps village shake off poverty

“Three years ago, I borrowed 180,000 yuan from my relatives to transform my house into a B&B. I never expected that I would be able to pay off my debt in three years,” said Nong Haizhong, a resident in Nonggang village in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

A corner of Nonggang village (Photo/People’s Daily Online)

The five-member family in Zhubo township, Longzhou county of Congzuo city, used to cultivate 0.4 hectares of sugarcane and was registered as a poor household in 2015, with a per capita income of 2,400 yuan.

The village is blessed with a sound ecological environment and a diverse variety of birds is located in the periphery of the Nonggang National Natural Reserve. From 2016, Nong Haizhong began working as a bird-watching guide for research teams and tourists who came to the village to observe and photograph birds, and his income has since continued to increase.

In September 2017, he built a B&B with five rooms, which increased his income to over 10,000 yuan. By the end of that year, his family had shaken off poverty.

“My family’s income has increased year by year in recent years,” he said, expressing satisfaction with his current living conditions.

Nong Weihong is another guide, who also runs the first B&B in the village. He has been working as a forest ranger at the nature reserve for 20 years.

The village has a population of nearly 3,000 people, who previously all made a living by planting sugarcane.

In 2008, ornithologists discovered the presence of Nonggang babblers, a recently described species of bird in the family Timaliidae, in the natural reserve, which attracted a great deal of attention. Nong Weihong worked as the guide for these ornithologists. In the years that followed, research teams would ask him to guide them to watch the babblers. “I can earn hundreds of yuan a day,” he said, adding that the part-time job has changed his life.

Now, more and more tourists are flocking to the village thanks to its growing popularity resulting from bird watching.

To better organize the bird-watching activities, Liuzhou Bird Watching Society in the autonomous region granted an interest-free loan of 100,000 yuan to Nong Weihong so that he could expand his B&B and improve its conditions in 2014.

He said the income from the four rooms on the second floor of his B&B and from his job as a bird-watching guide came to over 50,000 yuan that year.

“Being a bird-watching guide as a new way to increase our income has inspired us,” said Hou Yong, Party secretary of the township, explaining that the county and township have pushed Nonggang to develop ecotourism and find a balance between ecological protection and economic development.

The village has now built a bird-watching base, and with over 7 million yuan in financial support from the county, Nonggang has built infrastructure such as roads, parking lots, water and power supply, and communication facilities, and ensured a neat and tidy living environment.

According to Hou, the poverty headcount ratio in Nonggang stood at 26 percent at the end of 2015. Last year, the figure dropped to 0.4 percent.

So far, the village has opened 15 B&Bs, and there are now nearly 30 bird-watching guides. Last year, the bird-watching base received more than 16,000 visitors. On average, the income of 166 households in the village increased by about 15,000 yuan by providing shuttle services, catering and accommodation.

Self-service vending propers in China

China’s self-service vending industry featuring “Internet + Retail” has entered a period of rapid development in recent years, thanks to big data, cloud computing, artificial intelligence and other technologies.


Several intelligent fresh food vending cabinets recently made their debut in a residential compound in Tianxin district, Changsha city, central China’s Hunan province, selling fresh frozen food, fresh vegetables and fruit, grain, oil, eggs and milk, among other things.

“Now we can buy fresh vegetables and fruit directly downstairs, and the goods are high quality!” said a resident named Huang Jue while scanning the QR code on the cabinet. “The sensor system weighs the goods automatically. After closing the cabinet door, the cost will be deducted directly from the APP wallet, which is very convenient.”

In recent years, with the rapid development of big data, cloud computing, artificial intelligence and other technologies, the overall digital level of the retail industry has greatly improved, bringing in a period of rapid development for the self-service vending industry featuring “Internet + Retail”.

Self-service vending machines have been widely introduced around the country. Machines for beverages and electronic products are very popular in schools, and machines that sell boxed meals are popular in some office districts.

A survey of China’s self-service vending industry conducted by the China Commerce Association for General Merchandise showed that China’s self-service vending industry has developed rapidly in the past five years, with an average annual growth rate of more than 50 percent.

In 2019, there were over 655,000 self-service vending equipment units in China, an increase of 26.6 percent over the previous year. As the number of enterprises in the industry continued to increase, the production scale and equipment ownership has continued to grow.

Furthermore, from the perspective of the existing number of self-service vending units in China, compared with the average of 60 people per unit in developed countries, the number in China was only about 2,200 people per unit in 2019, leaving a great deal of room for growth.