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China's Ministry of Civil Affairs unveils new poverty alleviation policies by Zhao Binyu,March 18, 2020 Adjust font size:

China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs recently held a videoconference on poverty alleviation and the civil affairs system, and information about new policies related to social assistance and poverty reduction. The officials that led the meeting stressed that it is necessary for all levels of civil affairs departments to strive to overcome the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic and continue to advance poverty alleviation.

It was also emphasized that the civil affairs system’s poverty eradication work is a major part of winning a decisive victory in the battle against poverty, a necessary aspect of developing the quality and level of a comprehensive moderately prosperous society, and an important way to establish and improve long-term poverty alleviation mechanisms.

Five categories of current poverty reduction policies were covered. Firstly, social assistance programs will be implemented to help people get out of poverty, and implementation plans will be formulated based on actual situations. Relevant departments will help determine targets and objectives and provide oversight. Efforts will be made to ensure that everyone who is eligible is included in poverty alleviation projects. Initiatives that reduce the cost of employment will be implemented, subsistence allowances will be gradually reduced, and assistance will be provided to people who return to poverty after temporarily getting out of it.

Secondly, initiatives that benefit disadvantaged groups will be strengthened. Efforts will continue to be made to ensure that the social security system covers everyone who is meant to benefit from it and that marginalized people receive subsistence allowances. Poverty relief and welfare policies related to special groups, such as people living in extreme poverty, orphans, and minors who do not have parents or guardians looking after them, will be fully implemented. People with disabilities will receive living subsidies, and people with severe disabilities will also receive nursing subsidies. Policies that provide assistance to women, children, and seniors who have been left behind will be fully implemented as well.

Thirdly, social forces will be mobilized and encouraged to participate in poverty alleviation, and efforts to promote targeted poverty relief and coordination between different social organizations will be redoubled. The implementation of charity projects that are designed to combat poverty will be accelerated, and social work and volunteer service will be promoted in order to enhance in-depth poverty reduction.

Fourthly, all civil affairs work that is related to poverty alleviation will be administered in a coordinated and systematic manner. Governance in both urban and rural impoverished areas and grass-roots organization will also continue to be strengthened. New and improved rules and regulations affecting villages will be formed, including practices related to marriage and funerals, and their implementation will be accelerated. Sound and orderly administrative divisions will develop in impoverished areas, and they will receive guidance and support. Civil affairs departments in charge of regional and targeted poverty alleviation will continue doing their work and making advancements.

Fifthly, areas that are in extreme poverty will receive special emphasis. The central government has created new requirements that stipulate that additional targeted assistance and guidance involving relief projects, financial support, and training are provided in these areas.

The officials that conducted the conference stressed that all levels of civil affairs departments are tasked with supporting impoverished citizens amidst the COVID-19 outbreak and that targeted assistance is being provided. Efforts are being made to ensure that poverty-stricken people who are adversely affected by the epidemic and migrant workers who are experiencing temporary difficulties are able to maintain their livelihoods and that people in special circumstances who require basic support and services receive them. Supervision and management of the donation process pertaining to both funds and supplies are being improved. Efforts are also being made to console people who are affected by the epidemic. The civil administration system is becoming more modern, and governance capacity is improving.



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