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Eastern China's Zhejiang province eradicated poverty in 2015, five years ahead of the national target year of 2020

By Kimeng Hilton Ndukong (People's Daily Online)    14:06, October 13, 2017

Officials of Zhejiang Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs present the province's achievements in the past five years. Photo by Kimeng Hilton

The attention of the whole world will on October 18, 2017 be on China as the Communist Party of China, the CPC, holds its 19th party congress in the capital, Beijing. The gathering, which is organized every five years, is of utmost importance because the country’s top leadership is often chosen or renewed, and the country’s future direction discussed.

But since 2010, CPC party congresses have taken on even additional importance. China is now the world’s second largest economy behind the USA, with strong chances of clinching the top global position in less than 20 years from today.

Ahead of the 19th CPC congress, 27 African journalists on Thursday, October 12, 2017 undertook a four-day tour of Zhejiang Province to see what the party has achieved in the last five years in this eastern part of China. At a welcome reception held on Thursday in the provincial capital, Hangzhou for the journalists, Zhejiang Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs Office officials presented a detailed outline of progress in the economic, trade and poverty reduction domains.

The Director, Wang Yunqi, Deputy Division Director, Zhang Wenping, Deputy Director, Foreign Economic Liaison, Yin Linfeng, Deputy Director, Provincial Development and Reform Commission, Zhang Gang, and Wu Lianfeng from the Office of Poverty Alleviation, took turns to explain how the province fared.

Amongst the milestones was the eradication of poverty in 2015, five years to the national target year of 2020. This was the fruit of continuous innovative policies and strategies introduced since China embarked on reform and opening up in 1978. Wu Lianfeng added that Zhejiang is now focused on eliminating relative poverty in some counties.

The province’s total trade volume in 2016 was 326 billion US dollars or over 8 per cent of the national total. Meanwhile, economic growth in the first half of 2017 stood at 8 per cent. Ningbo has been the biggest global commodity port for 8 years running, while the 2016 Gross Domestic Product, GDP of 710 billion US dollars was the first amongst all of China’s provinces and autonomous regions, etc.

The 27 African journalists, members of a 10-month fellowship programme with the China-Africa Press Centre, CAPC, return to Beijing on October 15, 2017, not without visiting other CPC achievements in Zhejiang Province. These include Alibaba Group, the world’s largest online business platform; Dream Town, a new special area for the promotion of startups; and Zhejiang Normal University, which runs cooperation accords with several African universities.

Other spots are Xinguang Accessory Corporation, Yiwu City Planning Hall, Yiwu Mediators of Foreign Disputes and Adjustment Commission, and the Yiwu International Commerce and Trading City – the world’s biggest trading mart. The last lap of the tour will be visits to Zhejiang Satellite TV and Longjing Well Village.

Kimeng Hilton Ndukong, a contributor to People’s Daily Online, is Sub-Editor for World News with Cameroon Tribune bilingual daily newspaper in Cameroon. He is currently a 2017 China-Africa Press Centre, CAPC fellow. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Wu Chengliang, Bianji)

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