Thousands of safe new homes on track for Xinjiang

Mutalip Abduwali is very satisfied with his newly-built, 80-sq meter house, which contains three bedrooms, a living room, kitchen and bathroom.

"It has everything I needed," said the man, who lives in poverty-stricken Kelpen village of Awat county in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region. "I never would have had such a house without the preferential policies given to us."

The preferential policies he mentioned refer to the Rural Housing Project issued in Xinjiang in 2011, which aimed to build safe houses for local farmers and herdsmen, especially for those living below the poverty line.

By 2019, more than 2.68 million families in Xinjiang had moved to newly-built or repaired houses. No family in the region had to live in a deteriorated, dangerous house.

According to the region's Housing and Urban-Rural Development Bureau, it will help renovate houses for 75,000 families in 2020.

Bortala Mongolian autonomous prefecture plans to renovate 2,076 houses for local people in 2020 and has finished more than 1,600.

Patgul, who lives in Wutubulag village in the prefecture's Bole city, said that the four members of her family no longer have to live in a small house with just one room.

"Now my husband and I live in one bedroom," she said. "My son and daughter also have their own bedrooms. We installed an electric water heater in the bathroom to make the house cozier."

Wang Xinyu, one of Patgul's neighbors, said that she enjoys planting flowers and vegetables and cleaning the front and back yards.

"The village looks totally different," she said. "We get subsidies for repairing houses and growing crops. Our lives are getting better. "