Ningbo promotes reading in rural areas
A bookstore in a village in Ningbo's Fenghua district. [Photo/Ningbo Evening News]
The campaign launched by Ningbo in East China's Zhejiang province to build bookstores in its rural areas has been bearing fruits.
Launched in 2021, the campaign is part of the local government's efforts to boost common prosperity by promoting reading among rural residents.
As of May, 2,080 such bookstores with a combined collection of over 3.13 million books had been built across Ningbo. The city has 2,103 administrative villages, which means more than 98 percent of them have such a bookstore.
Since the beginning of last year, over 8,800 events related to reading have been held in these venues.
Authorities have been actively exploring ways to promote reading among local residents in recent years. For example, April has been designated a "reading month" in Ningbo, according to a legislation enacted in April 2020.
Ningbo is the first city in Zhejiang to have a legislation that promotes reading.
The regulation does not make reading compulsory nor interfere with individual reading behavior. Instead, it further clarifies the responsibilities of related government departments and helps tackle existing problems in the city, such as the unbalanced distribution of reading facilities and the lack of reading services.