JINAN, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- Chinese internet giant Alibaba said Thursday that it has nominated 2,100 new "Taobao Villages" with e-commerce centers appearing in many of China's rural areas for the first time this year.
These Taobao Villages are rural e-commerce centers that feature Alibaba's logistics, service and training to encourage farmers to become involved in online retailing.
To be nominated as a Taobao Village, Alibaba requires total annual e-commerce transactions of over 10 million yuan (1.5 million U.S. dollars) and more than 100 online stores located in the village.
Alibaba said Thursday at the National Forum on Taobao Villages held in Heze, east China's Shandong Province, that Zhejiang, Guangdong and Jiangsu provinces boast the highest numbers of Taobao Villages, jointly amounting to 68 percent of the total.
In 2017, Taobao Villages appeared for the first time in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Chongqing Municipality, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region as well as Guizhou, Shanxi and Shaanxi provinces.
Gao Hongbing, vice president of Alibaba, said there are 100 Taobao Villages in the rural area administered by the city of Yiwu, Zhejiang Province, the largest cluster of Taobao Villages in the country.
The development of Taobao Villages has helped lift many rural areas out of poverty through encouraging online sales of farm produce and local specialties. Along with the development, Alibaba and local authorities have improved roads, broadband internet services, power supply and logistics to support farmers in setting up their online stores.