According to media reports, China realized the goal of having a museum for every 250,000 residents during the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) period. In fact, in places such as Beijing, the Inner Mongolia autonomous region and Shaanxi province, the ratio is even more impressive: one museum for every 110,000-130,000 residents.
Museums preserve and exhibit artifacts and other valuable historical, archaeological and scientific objects, and conduct in-depth research, and therefore are a great source of learning, as well as entertainment. Being a civilization that is over 5,000 years old, there is no dearth of relics in China.
That's why the museum sector is prospering, with one new museum coming up every two days between 2016 and 2020, increasing the total number of museums in the country to 5,788 by the end of 2020.
In 2020, when the novel coronavirus raged around the world, museums in China held over 29,000 exhibitions and 225,000 education activities, receiving 540 million visitors in person and over 100 million visitors online.
With the general standard of living improving in China, people are developing a better aesthetic sense. This year, the number of visitors to museums reached a record high during the Spring Festival and Labor Day holidays. The figure is likely to increase during the National Day holiday in October.
Museums are now making use of new technologies such as big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence to better serve their visitors. Many museums have also developed special products to increase their appeal. The Sanxingdui cultural relic site, for example, has come up with ice creams shaped like its famed golden and bronze facial masks.
All these efforts are helping the domestic museum sector boom.
A system to further improve cultural services has already been included in the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-25), which lists measures such as digitizing public museums and libraries. This means the museum sector has a brighter future ahead.