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Victoria Kwakwa: WB to launch a new study on China's poverty reduction,October 16, 2019 Adjust font size:

The World Bank group plans to start its fourth study on poverty reduction in China this year, said Victoria Kwakwa, the WB vice president for the East Asia and Pacific Region in her video opening speech at a forum on Wednesday.

Kwakwa applauded China’s achievements in poverty reduction at 2019 China Poverty Reduction International Forum. “China has sustained an unprecedented four decades of high growth. It has resulted in poverty decline unprecedented in its speed and scale, pulling 850 million Chinese out of poverty. China’s progress in poverty reduction has global significance. China alone accounts for three-quarters of the reduction in global poverty from the 1980s to today.”

The World Bank Group is committed to fighting poverty in all dimensions and to boosting shared prosperity. “We use the latest evidence and analysis to help governments develop sound policies that can help the poorest in every country and focus our investments in areas that are critical to improving lives,” she said.

“Knowledge played a pivotal role in WB involvement in China’s poverty reduction strategies.” Kwakwa noted that the WB had produced three influential reports on poverty assessment in 1992, 2001 and 2009, with China’s strategic policy focus, and high-level conferences that paved the way to consensus leading to major reforms. “We plan to continue this tradition by launching a new study this year,” she disclosed.

Though the progress made in reducing global poverty was remarkable, the number of people living in extreme poverty remains unacceptably high, she pointed out. Given the worsening global growth forecasts, the target of ending extreme poverty by 2030 is unlikely to be achieved. “That’s why the World Bank Group is working with successful countries such as China to build its own knowledge and capabilities and to transfer development lessons to other countries,” she said.

“Cooperating with China on global development and poverty eradication has been a theme in the World Bank-China partnership since 2006. For several years, China has made several important contributions to global knowledge.” Kwakwa said. The 40th anniversary of their partnership coincides with the official target date for the eradication of extreme poverty in China. “The new study—Poverty Reduction in China: Lessons for the World and Challenges Ahead—aims to build on existing initiatives, including this forum, to curate the available knowledge and tailor it to development challenges,” she emphasized.

“The commemoration of 40 years of partnership is not just an opportunity to learn lessons—it is also a chance to look ahead and consider China’s own policy options for addressing remaining social vulnerabilities once extreme poverty has been eradicated,” she added.

The 2019 China Poverty Reduction International Forum was held in Beijing, on the theme of “Joint efforts on knowledge sharing, to promote global poverty reduction governance”. It was co-hosted by the China Internet Information Center (CIIC), International Poverty Reduction Center in China (IPRCC), World Bank, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), World Food Programme (WFP) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The forum was jointly organized by, China Development Gateway, and Chinese Voice Think Tank, and supported by the China Institute for Poverty Reduction Research at Beijing Normal University and the College of Humanities and Development Studies, China Agricultural University. It brought together over 200 participants from 30 countries, including officials, experts, and representatives from international organizations, academia, business and NGOs.

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