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Guizhou poverty alleviation success inspires senior African officials

By Nicholas Dweh Nimley (People's Daily Online)    15:52, August 30, 2018

Senior government officials from several African countries concluded a three day visit to Bijie, southwest China’s Guizhou Province recently.

Statistics from the UN in 2013 revealed that over 700 million people in Africa are living below the international poverty line of $1.90 per day, much lower than the figure of 1.7 billion in 1999. Guizhou, in comparison, currently have over one million people living in poverty.

The officials, comprising of ministers and directors from Botswana, South Africa, Liberia, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Mauritius, and a senior Africa Union representative went to Bijie to explore how the country’s poverty alleviation program was successfully tailored by the local government to lift people out of poverty.

They were thrilled when visiting Qianxi County, where 502,800 people were removed from poverty through agriculture as well as vocational training for over 88,500 people. About 700,000 more people will be helped using poverty alleviation methods by 2020.

In Haizi village, Qianxi County, the per capita income has risen from 4,000 RMB in 2014 to over 10,000 RMB in 2018, following the establishment of a cooperative between villages and the county committee. The villagers are engaged in the planting of peppers, kiwi fruit, Chinese onions and green plums.

The officials also visited the first farm of pure seedlings, created by Evergrande Group and Zhonghe Hengrui Group poverty cooperation project in Dafang County. Evergrande group constructed housing units to relocate 42 poor households in Hengda village.

The company, which is helping the local government to implement poverty alleviation programs, has been able to build 443 standardized vegetable greenhouses around the village. They plan to build the largest fruit, vegetable and cattle breeding bases in southwestern China.

The successful practice of poverty alleviation in Bijie reflects the strategic vision and foresight of the local government for innovative job creation through tailored projects and programs, said an official at the poverty alleviation office.

Speaking at the reception dinner, Josefa Leonel Correia Sacko, a member of the African Union Committee for Rural Economy and Agriculture, said China has aligned the Belt and Road Initiative with its poverty alleviation program.

She disclosed that Africa and China were trying to strengthen MOU in terms of looking at poverty alleviation as one of the key areas of China-Africa cooperation.

“It’s important for us to address the issue of poverty alleviation on the continent and we need to drive our programs by learning from the Chinese experience,” Sacko stressed.

Wei Guonan, Vice Governor of Guizhou Province, said that Guizhou has been the battlefield for poverty alleviation in China, adding that Africa and Guizhou have similar challenges and constraints in addressing poverty. 

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

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