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Poverty relief: Achievements in 5 years

China Today, July 18, 2017 Adjust font size:

Enhance self-development capacity

At the end of 2012, when Xi was on an inspection tour in Fuping County, he pointed out that the government should pay more attention to the contiguous poverty-stricken areas by helping impoverished people and the region to seek development by themselves.

China has always encouraged government departments, enterprises and individuals to jointly help reduce poverty.

The government has provided sufficient financial support for fighting poverty. Over the past four years, RMB 196.1 billion of the central budget has been allocated to poverty reduction, representing annualized growth of 19.22 percent. The government has also encouraged various parts of society to provide financial aid. The financial institutions have issued a total of RMB 283.3 billion in small loans to help nearly eight million families get rid of poverty.

In 2014 China set October 17 as the Day for the Eradication of Poverty, and since then has carried out relevant activities to mobilize private enterprises, social organizations and individuals to participate in poverty alleviation. The program for the eastern region to offer assistance to poverty relief in the western region, initiated in 1996, has been upgraded. Nine developed provinces and cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Zhejiang have provided assistance to their paired 12 provinces in the western region. Moreover, a total of 320 units of the central government and the CPC have taken responsibility for helping to lift their targeted 592 counties out of poverty. The People's Liberation Army and the Chinese People's Armed Police Force have helped more than 2,000 impoverished villages. Around 26,500 private businesses have helped nearly four million impoverished people in 24,600 villages with which they are paired.

The goal of all these measures is to enable impoverished areas to build self-development capacity. The government creates employment to help those who can work to get out of poverty. In 2016, 30 counties in six provinces, such as Hebei, Anhui and Shanxi, were selected as experimental zones for poverty alleviation through photovoltaic (PV) projects. According to the plan, the PV projects will be carried out in 35,000 impoverished villages in 16 provinces, covering two million impoverished households.

The State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development and National Tourism Administration helped 22,600 villages increase income through developing rural tourism. There are 428 poverty-stricken counties enrolled in a rural e-commerce pilot program. In Luotuowan Village in Fuping County where Xi visited, cadres helped local villagers open online stores, through which local agricultural products such as honey, eggs and walnuts could be sold nationwide, thereby generating revenue.

At the central work conference on development-oriented poverty reduction in 2015, the heads of Party committees and governments of 22 provinces and autonomous regions in central and western China signed with the central authorities letters of commitment on poverty elimination, and likewise similar documents were signed by leaders at lower levels.

Share the Chinese experience

Over the past few years, China has received support from the international society in poverty reduction. Many international organizations such as the World Bank, the UN Development Program, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the Asia Development Bank have provided help in terms of funds, ideas and technology. The World Bank started to approve loans to China to support poverty reduction in 1996. Its loans have benefited almost every province in western China. From the end of 2016, the World Bank started to offer loans to targeted provinces, such as Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Shaanxi Province, to support cooperation between farmers' cooperatives and agricultural enterprises and to develop the agricultural value chain.

Currently there are still more than 700 million people living in extreme poverty globally. In China, over 40 million people need to escape poverty by 2020. The Chinese government lays great store on exchanges and cooperation with international institutions and other developing countries in poverty reduction. It also promotes the international cause of poverty alleviation by providing aid to other developing countries with no political strings attached, so as to help developing countries, especially the least developed countries, to eradicate poverty.


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