Township enterprises are businesses run by farmers in the countryside. Thanks to the rural reform and scientific and technological progress in agriculture, the efficiency of agricultural production has been improved by a large margin, and a huge number of rural laborers have been emancipated from the land, thus laying the basis for the development of township enterprises. The products of township enterprises with their competitive prices sell well throughout the country.
Township enterprises are involved in various spheres, such as industry, agricultural products processing, transportation and communications, construction, commerce and catering. In 1999, China had more than 20.71 million township enterprises, with 127.04 million employees and generating 2,500 billion yuan in added value, which made up more than 60 percent of the social added value of the rural areas. In 2000, the added value of China’s township enterprises stood at 2,720 billion yuan in added value, or a 9.14 percent increase over the previous year.
Now township enterprises have become the main source for the raising of farmers’ income and rural economic development. Some of them have become renowned non-governmental enterprises.