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Targeted measures contribute to poverty alleviation in Hubei,October 09, 2017 Adjust font size:

In 2016, the first year of endeavor to eradicate poverty by 2020, Hubei’s performance is above national average level in terms of the accuracy rate to recognize impoverished people and the degree of satisfaction. Growth rate of per capita disposable income in poverty-stricken villages is also over provincial average rate. To achieve this, targeted measures and accurate approaches contributed a lot.

Targeted strategic construction: To eradicate poverty, Hubei established a “1+N+M” policy supporting system – “1” stands for the Decision to Boost Targeted Poverty Alleviation and Elimination released by the Provincial Party Committee and the government; “N” is the mechanism of restriction, assistance, evaluation, stimulation, accountability, moral support and personnel selection; “M” refers to the targeted measures on poverty reduction. Nearly a hundred documents were released so that central policies can be elaborated in different departments and undertaken downwards to the grass-root level and to the people.

Targeted policies and resource allocation: Hubei Provincial Plan of Poverty Reduction and an implementation plan were released in four regions, for which preferential policies of alleviating poverty through industrial development, relocation, health care, education, environmental protection and basic living allowances were enacted. Four levels of administration from city to village established a general and an annual plan to set objectives at different levels and take various approaches.

Targeted government-led investment: Hubei established a rigid financial investment mechanism. The provincial and municipal government, together with impoverished counties, increased the poverty alleviation budget by 15% of the annual local fiscal revenue. In 2016, the special fund for poverty reduction reached 6.66 billion yuan (c. U.S. $1.11 billion), including 3.289 billion yuan (c. U.S. $548 million) on the provincial level, an 80.9% above the average investment of 22 provinces. Meanwhile, Hubei established an integrated investment mechanism. In 2016, the financial fund of Hubei province was 89.27 billion yuan (c. U.S. $14.88 billion). Furthermore, a development fund for impoverished regions was also established. A quantity of 500 million yuan (c. U.S. $83.33 million) was raised to set up funds for industrial and tourism development. Finally, a financing platform was also established. Under that framework, a number of investment and development companies were founded to undertake special-purpose loans from financial institutions with a total of 36.55 billion yuan (c. U.S. $6.09 billion).

Accurate recognition: Hubei is the first province in China that initiated accurate recognition data auditing, verifying and rectifying all statistics to achieve an accuracy rate of over 98%. A de-recognition system was set up in accordance with the recognition system, following the procedure of application, data collection, democratic accountability, public notification and de-recognition. Subsequently, a database with accuracy, completion and standardized management was built. It was shown that the number in the database rose from 3.433 million to 3.818 million, and the number of relocated people increased from 850,000 to 910,000. The data showed that a total impoverished population of 5.79 million was highly consistent with the goal.

Industrial development: Hubei planned to make full use of the 3.3 million labor forces in impoverished areas. While signing contract with provincial Agricultural Bank of China and allocating 600 million yuan (c. U.S. $100 million) for micro-loan risk compensation funds, it issued 4.63 billion yuan (c. U.S. $772 million) of micro-loans to 100,000 impoverished households. A plan to build a photovoltaic power station of 882,000 kilowatt was submitted and corporations including JD and Suning were involved in a pilot e-commerce project in 15 impoverished villages. At the same time, 100,000 people overcame poverty through rural tourism. Industrial development has brought stable income and accelerated process to relieve poverty.

Relocation: Administration of all levels established relocation offices, strictly adhering to the restriction of house type and floor area—25 m2 per person. Loans for construction were prohibited and a comprehensive relocation arrangement for developing infrastructure, industry and public service was made to ensure gradual and sustainable poverty eradication.

Health care: Hubei strived to guarantee impoverished people the access to basic health care. 670 million yuan (c. U.S. $112 million) out of 1.111 billion (c. U.S. $185 million) national and provincial investments was allocated to impoverished areas. Tens of thousands of doctors were called upon to support health care in the villages, and one-to-one support was provided between upper first-class hospitals and hospitals in impoverished counties. Over 200 licensed medical practitioners were recruited annually. A temporary bailout fund of 250 million yuan (c. U.S. $41.67 million) was released to successfully provide attention to 367,000 medical cases. Meanwhile, the minimum deduction for critical illnesses was lowered and the medical reimbursement was up by 20%.

Education: Hubei has deemed education as the fundamental solution to fight against poverty. A subsidy of 2.2 billion yuan (c. U.S. $366.67 million) was issued to help over 1.5 million poverty-stricken students in 2016. Hubei has requested an annual donation of 50 million (c. U.S. $7.24 million) from China Oceanwide Holdings Group for five consecutive years and 5000 yuan (c. U.S. $833.33) to each of the 10,000 undergraduate candidates in 2016. 37 universities, 37 higher vocational schools, 78 high schools and 37 secondary vocational schools signed agreement with 37 impoverished counties as an effort to bridge the educational gap.

Basic living allowance: Hubei arranged an annual fund of 2.2 billion yuan (c. U.S. $366.67 million) for basic living allowance for 5 consecutive years to subsidize 2.2 million people in poverty-stricken villages, especially the sick and the disabled. The subsidy per capita was above national standards.

Environmental protection: President Xi Jinping addressed on the 18th National Congress of the CCP that environment is of equal if not more importance than economic development, that environment is our treasure. To follow this principle, Hubei allocated 300 million yuan (c. U.S. $50 million) to build a natural forest protection project. As a result, the average personal income increased by nearly 1,000 yuan (c. U.S. $166.67).

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