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Consul General Li Xuhang Publishes Signed Article "Breaking the 'Poverty Curse': The Example of China" in Al Bayan
2021/03/17

On March 16, Consul General Li Xuhang published a signed article in Al Bayan, a mainstream newspaper in the UAE, titled "Breaking the ‘Poverty Curse’: The Example of China". The English translation of the full text is as follows:

Haique, once known as “the poorest in the world”, used to be a mountain village of extreme poverty in the Hezhang County, Guizhou Province of China. In 2012, the per capita annual income of its villagers was less than US$600. However, through developing food industries with local features such as apples, mushrooms and free-ranged eggs and leisure industries such as homestay tourism, the per capita annual income of the villagers reached US$3,000 in 2020. The village was completely freed from poverty and has embarked on the road to prosperity. And this is just a microcosm of China's 120,000 impoverished villages emerging from poverty in recent years.

On February 25, 2021, President Xi Jinping solemnly announced: The 98.99 million people in rural areas who were living below the current poverty threshold all shook off poverty. All the 832 designated poor counties and 128,000 impoverished villages got rid of poverty. China’s complete eradication of extreme poverty – the first target of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – is 10 years ahead of schedule. More than 98 million people have been lifted out of poverty in eight years, that is, an average of more than 10 million people were lifted out of poverty every year. The solution for achieving this ambitious goal proposed by the central government was “targeted poverty alleviation”. With governments at all levels shouldering their responsibilities, village-stationed officials going into action without delay, and private sectors responding positively, an initiative of poverty alleviation driven by the government and participated in by the whole society were launched all over the country. Various methods of eliminating poverty based on local conditions such as developing local industries, providing education, providing funding, relocating people, and developing e-commerce composed a magnificent landscape of poverty alleviation. "Targeted poverty alleviation", "village-stationed officials” and "participation of the whole society" have become the most beautiful keywords in this landscape and are also the secrets of achieving poverty alleviation.

How to do it: the central government set the general plan of "targeted poverty alleviation". Targeted poverty alleviation reflects the government’s top-level design. President Xi Jinping chaired the central government’s 7 work conferences on poverty alleviation and conducted more than 50 investigations on poverty alleviation work. Targeted poverty alleviation has become a major strategy for the Chinese government’s poverty alleviation. It is designed to use the method of development to eliminate the root causes of poverty and pave the way for "passing on fishing skills rather than handing out fish". In practice, targeted poverty alleviation means formulating individualized policies for each village and each household focusing on establishing long-term mechanisms for poverty alleviation and lasting paths to prosperity.

Who will do it: "Village-stationed officials” have become a key role. Governments at all levels clarified their responsibilities for poverty alleviation and sent reliable officials to villages to lead the work of poverty alleviation, which reflects the government's ability of execution and sense of responsibility. The 3 million village-stationed officials sent from the central government and local governments to poverty-stricken villages lived in the same way as residents, worked selflessly, conducted in-depth investigations, and made scientific decisions. They have become the vanguard of poverty alleviation. More than 1,800 people even lost their lives on the journey of poverty alleviation.

Whom to rely on: "The participation of the whole society" is the way to win. The fight against poverty is a people's war. In 2020, agricultural products in some countries were damaged due to Covid-19. However, in China, farmers’ products took a ride on the government’s poverty alleviation policy during the epidemic and were sold in an even faster pace. China’s e-commerce and live commerce have impressed the world. People all over the country, voluntarily assuming the mission of poverty alleviation, were eagerly buying agricultural products from poverty-stricken areas online. The government's actions, the market's effectiveness, and the society's love have become the winning way to fight poverty. Poverty reduction is a worldwide problem. China has given an answer to break the "poverty curse" in its own way, setting a "Chinese example" for the cause of global poverty reduction. And this unprecedented achievement of China, which concerns the right to survival and development of hundreds of millions of people, is nothing less than a monument in the history of the development of human rights.

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