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The Global Significance of a Complete Victory in China's Fight against Poverty
Li Yang, Consul General of China inRio de Janeiro
驻里约热内卢总领馆
2021/03/05

 

As the Communist Party of Chinagears up for its centenary, General SecretaryXi Jinping solemnly declares a complete victoryin China'sfight against poverty. This is a miracle in human history. In more than 40 years of reform and opening up, China has lifted more than 770 million people out of poverty, completed the arduous task of eradicating absolute poverty, contributedmore than 70%to the global poverty reduction endeavorand achieved the poverty reduction target set by the United Nations 10 years ahead of schedule. In the past eight years, 832 poor counties and nearly 100 million poor people escaped poverty. More than 3 million people in total have worked at the frontline of poverty alleviation. This great victory is not only a remarkableachievement forthe Chinese people, but also of great global significance.

 

The complete victory in China's fight against povertyhas strengthened the confidence of countries around the world in poverty eradication. Up till now, there are still more than 1 billion poverty-strickenpeople around the world. Poverty is not unique to developing countries, as there are also numerous impoverished peoplein developed countries for various reasons. Poverty not only costs dignityand health, but could also trigger conflicts or even wars within or between countries. Poverty may even become an important factor disrupting the orderlyrelationshipbetween human society and nature, as poverty often prompts people to grab subsistent resources from nature predatorily, causing environmental damage. China's poverty reduction practice is a full proofthat poverty can be eradicated. Theleader and government of a country can eliminate poverty eventually as long as they take onthe historical responsibility of improvingthe well-being of all, make long-term and practicalpoverty reduction plans and take effective measures with perseverance.China's poverty headcountreached 770 million at the peak, thusthe difficultyof poverty reduction was beyond imagination. China is able toovercome poverty, and there is no reason why other countries could not do it.China's successinpoverty eradication is encouraging more and more countries to fightpoverty.

 

The complete victory in China's fight against poverty has providedtheoryand practicefor other countries to explore the root of poverty and rulesof poverty alleviation. What is fundamentally different from others is that China's poverty alleviation has never been so simple asto send money to the poverty-stricken people, to engage in charity, to adoptstopgap measures asa symbolic effort, or put ona "political show" to win votes. Poverty eliminationis aconsistent political aspiration of the Communist Party of China to observe the fundamental purpose of serving the people and promote common prosperity for everyone. It shows thatthe Chinese government actively stepsup to itsresponsibilitiesto the peopleand serves asan important part of China's grand state and social governance projectand a crucial component of the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.That is precisely whyChina's poverty alleviation goes hand in hand with helpingpeople build the confidence and capacity to pull themselves out of poverty, creating jobs,breaking class rigidity, interrupting intergenerational transmission of poverty, strengthening education and medical care, and even environmental protection.That is also whyChina's poverty alleviationis under the direct leadership,instruction and supervision of General Secretary Xi Jinping. This mature and effective system of poverty alleviation with Chinese characteristicsfeatures coordinated national efforts, namely "central government formulatingand overarching plans, provincial governments assumingoverall responsibility, and city and county governments takingcharge of implementation",whichprovidesvaluable enlightenment to theworldtoday.

 

The complete victory in China's fight against poverty has greatly contributedto the achievement of the UN Millennium Development Goals by the international community. In short, the Millennium Development Goals establishedunder the UN framework in 2000 commitsto gradually combat poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women around the world. As mentioned above, these problems are largely caused bypoverty. The eradication of absolute poverty in Chinahas not onlyensured that the basic needs of poorpeople are met, but also greatly improved health, life expectancy, education attainment and women'sstatus in China.China even performs better on some indicatorsthan some developed countries. China has established a universal basic medical security system, achieveda life expectancy of 77 years and a closeto100%enrollment rate forprimaryschool-age children. In the past few years, the number of college graduates allexceeded 8 million annually. Chinese womentodayplay an important role of "supporting half of the sky"both in family life andsocial activities.These achievements added value to therelevant efforts by the international community.Ban Ki-moon, former UN Secretary-General, pointed out several years ago that China helped the UN achieve the Millennium Development Goals on poverty reduction ahead of schedule.

 

The complete victory in China's fight against poverty has explored China'ssolutionfor the sustainable development of mankind. In 2015, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 sustainable development goals at the United NationsSummit, aimingto solve a series of challenges tothe sustainable development of mankind. In line with its new philosophy of innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development, China's poverty alleviation in practice is not only an effort topromote high-quality economic growth, eliminate domestic poverty and achieve common prosperity, but also a process of livinga green and low-carbon life, promoting sustainable production and consumption, preservingthe environment, and seeking to live in harmony with nature. China has proved by its own actions that economic growthand poverty eliminationwouldnot necessarilyharmecological conservation. Clear riversand green mountains can coexist with mankind and createinexhaustible wealth. While guiding its own development with a new philosophy, China has fully and effectively implementedthe 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, promoted the alignment of the Belt and Road Initiative withthe 2030 Agenda and helped more than 100 countries in differentcontinents conductvarious kinds of poverty reduction cooperation. China actively promotes global environmental governance, takes the lead in curbing climate change, and strives to play an exemplary role of a large country for the peaceful, cooperative, innovative, open, shared and sustainable development of mankind.

 

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