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China helps accelerate process of international poverty reduction

By He Yin (People's Daily)    09:05, December 17, 2020
China helps accelerate process of international poverty reduction
Farmers pick chrysanthemums in a poverty-alleviation planting base in Baokang county, Xiangyang, central China's Hubei province, Nov. 5. (People's Daily Online/ Yang Tao/)

China is willing to work with all countries to promote international poverty reduction and build a community with a shared future for humanity, said Chinese President Xi Jinping in a congratulatory letter to the International Forum on Sharing Poverty Reduction Experience, which opened in Beijing on Dec. 14.

In the letter, Xi also expounded on the historical process, great achievements and international contribution of the efforts made by the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the Chinese government in poverty alleviation.

Xi's letter demonstrated China's unswerving determination in responding to challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic with the world, in jointly promoting poverty alleviation and helping more people in the world benefit from the results of poverty reduction.

Calling poverty eradication "a common ideal of humanity," Xi said that the CPC and the Chinese government made unremitting and arduous efforts to ensure a better life for the people.

Over the past 40-plus years of reform and opening-up, more than 700 million people in China have been lifted out of poverty, contributing more than 70 percent of the global poverty reduction.

Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, the CPC and the Chinese government have moved poverty alleviation to a more prominent position, and fought the largest and most vigorous battle against poverty in history.

After eight years of continuous efforts, China has accomplished its poverty alleviation target for the new era on schedule.

The country has lifted all the rural poor under the current income standard out of poverty, removed all impoverished counties from its poverty list, and eradicated absolute poverty and overall regional poverty.

With nearly 100 million poor people in rural areas lifted out of poverty, China has achieved a significant victory that has impressed the world.

"Between 1981 and 2004, China succeeded in lifting more than half a billion people out of extreme poverty. This is certainly the greatest leap to overcome poverty in history. China's efforts alone have ensured that the world's Millennium Development Goal on poverty reduction will be met," said Robert Zoellick, former president of the World Bank.

China has always believed that "You yourself desire rank and standing; then help others to get rank and standing."

While advancing poverty alleviation at home, China has always provided assistance to other developing countries to the best of its capacity, and has contributed to the global poverty reduction cause through concrete actions.

The country has set up the China-UN Peace and Development Fund and the South-South Cooperation Assistance Fund, and made solid progress in cooperation projects under such frameworks as the Pilot Project of Poverty Reduction Cooperation in East Asia and the China-Africa Poverty Reduction and People's Welfare Plan.

China has also continued to seek greater synergy between the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) cooperation and the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

According to a World Bank report, BRI projects could help lift 7.6 million people out of extreme poverty and 32 million people from moderate poverty.

In June this year, China joined the UN Alliance for Poverty Eradication as a founding member.

In 2021, the country will host a workshop on digital technology-enabled poverty alleviation, in a bid to unleash the role of digital technologies in eradicating poverty in the Asia-Pacific region.

China has provided assistance for at least 166 countries and international organizations to help reduce poverty in other developing countries, noted Alicia Bárcena, executive secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).

After the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, China has actively supported G20's Debt Service Suspension Initiative to back the poorest countries, she added.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recently warned that the global response to realizing poverty and environmental goals agreed by world leaders in 2015 has not been “ambitious enough”, and it would be very difficult to bring the rate of extreme poverty below 3 percent by 2030.

As the epidemic rages around the world, the course of poverty reduction is facing severe challenges. The UN has predicted that the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic would cause an increasing number of people to fall into poverty.

China's practices in poverty alleviation have increasingly attracted attention from the international community, and more and more countries are learning from China's poverty alleviation concepts and experience.

Poverty eradication is not an inevitable product of a country's rapid economic growth or the development of the world, said Guy Ryder, Director-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO), adding that it has to be clearly set as a goal in a country's policy.

Ryder believes that China's achievements in poverty alleviation have proved the point. Besides such measures as those taken to boost employment and improve social security and medical services, a country will only be able to make progress in poverty alleviation by making it an important goal of policy, according to him.

The process of ending poverty through the reform and opening up policy in China is a valuable example to all those nations trying to alleviate poverty, said Stephen Perry, chairman of the 48 Group Club, a London-based nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting trade between China and the U.K.

China is ready to work with other countries to build a beautiful world that is free of poverty and enjoys common development, said Xi at Session II of the 15th G20 Leaders' Summit via video link.

China will soon finish building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and embark on a new journey to fully build a modern socialist country.

On the new journey, China will consolidate and expand its achievements in poverty alleviation, and continue contributing wisdom and strength to accelerating the process of international poverty reduction and improving the common well-being of mankind.


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