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April 1st, 2011
04:49 AM ET

Chinese town the internet built

Qingyanliu, China (CNN) – In the U.S., the Internet is forcing the closure of brick and mortar stores.  In China, the web is building up entire villages.

Visit Qingyanliu in China and you quickly get a sense of how the Internet is revolutionizing the nation's job scene.

For decades, the good paying jobs have been at the factories.  Chinese workers still travel long distances to make jeans and plush toys for consumers around the world.  Others wind up in the big cities of Beijing or Shanghai trying to make ends meet.  But now people like Liu Jin can make a ton of money closer to home – thanks to the web.

Liu works in Qingyanliu, a farming town that has been transformed by e-commerce.  He and some of his friends rented space in one of the squat buildings here, and armed only with a computer, they started taking and filling orders for online customers all over China.

Like many in this town, they buy goods at the nearby wholesale market of Yiwu and ship them across the country.    Millions of dollars in sales are rung up in this village every year.  Without the Internet, Liu told me, he likely would have had to move to find work.  Instead, he lives close to his parents who farm oranges nearby.  The Internet, Liu says, gives him freedom.

As China's economy develops, the government is looking for ways to even out growth and create jobs in rural areas.  The Internet is providing a solution.

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Filed under: China