According to this piece by Lauren Keane in the Washington Post, the Chinese government is hoping that the potato will help to provide greater food security as the country’s population peaks. Earlier this year, the article says, the government signed an agreement with the International Potato Center to jointly launch a potato research centre in Beijing.
Of course, persuading the Chinese to eat more potatoes will not be easy. Most Chinese people I’ve talked to about the importance of potatoes in, for example, the British diet, are incredulous - you mean, English people are willing to eat potatoes as 主食, a staple starch food?!!!*&@%^&*!!