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Nation lauded for achievements in poverty alleviation

Author  :  WANG JUNMEI     Source  :    Chinese Social Sciences Today     2017-11-07

Oct. 17 marked the fourth Poverty Alleviation Day in China and the 25th International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. At the recent International Monetary Fund and World Bank annual meetings, the head of the World Bank applauded China’s contribution to the global efforts to reduce poverty.

“This is one of the great stories in human history,” said Jim Yong Kim, president of the bank. China has lifted more than 800 million people out of poverty since 1990 due to the evolution of the country’s economic system and its embrace of the global market, he said. 

As the major contributor to global efforts to end poverty, China has helped reduce the portion of the world’s population living in extreme poverty from 40 percent to less than 10 percent, Kim said, adding that the World Bank has learned much from China’s experience in fighting poverty.

According to the Annual Report on Poverty Reduction in China (2016), China accounted for 71.82 percent of the world’s total poverty reductions from 1981 to 2012. Due to China’s contribution, the Human Development Index reached the 2014 level more than two years ahead of schedule.

Particularly since the 18th CPC National Congress, poverty reduction has been prioritized in the state governance agenda. According to the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Report 2015, the extreme poverty rate in Eastern Asia dropped from 61 percent in 1990 to only 4 percent in 2015 as a result of progress in China.

In the past five years, a total of 55.64 million people shook off poverty. In other words, someone crosses the poverty threshold every three seconds. 

The central and provincial governments increased funding year by year and appropriated more than 100 billion yuan for poverty alleviation for the first time in 2016.

Meanwhile, with a clear picture of the poverty situation in mind, the government proposed a targeted poverty alleviation policy. The poorest western areas gained momentum in the fight against poverty with aid from eastern regions. 

A total of 320 units of the central government and the Party took responsibility for helping lift their paired units, including more than 20,000 private enterprises and poor villages, out of poverty, shaping a nationwide poverty reduction network.

In order to share knowledge more effectively and contribute to the eradication of poverty on a global scale, Chinese authorities launched an online database showcasing poverty reduction cases and highlighting the country’s experience in anti-poverty programs at home and abroad.

Vincent Martin, a representative of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in China, said that the database is a key step toward sharing valuable poverty reduction policy and knowledge created by China and other countries, thereby facilitating the realization of the MDGs.

Moreover, China is cooperating with the FAO and regards the elimination of poverty as one of the important cooperation strategies. In June 2017, the two sides signed a Country Programming Framework (CPF) for 2016-2020, with poverty eradication as one of the goals. 

The CPF set out four priority areas for joint collaboration: promoting sustainable agro-ecological development, improving food security and nutrition, improving public health, and supporting China in regional and international agricultural cooperation.





Editor: Yu Hui

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