SOLEMN COMMITMENT DELIVERED
The Chinese nation had long been plagued by poverty at a scale and a level of severity which were rarely seen anywhere else in the world.
Since its founding in July 1921, the CPC has always taken the happiness of the people and rejuvenation of the nation as its aspiration, said the white paper titled "Poverty Alleviation: China's Experience and Contribution."
The founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949 and the establishment of the socialist system have provided basic institutional guarantees for addressing the root causes of poverty. The reform and opening up, which started about four decades ago, has accelerated the country's development and poverty alleviation.
"Ensuring that poor people and poor areas will enter the moderately prosperous society together with the rest of the country is a solemn promise made by our Party," President Xi Jinping was quoted as saying.
Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, the Party Central Committee, with Comrade Xi Jinping at the core, has fought a decisive battle against poverty that has been unprecedented in scale and intensity, and has benefited the largest number of people in human history, according to Xu.
To fulfill the commitment, the leadership has mobilized the energies of the whole Party, the whole country, and the whole of society. More than 3 million first Party secretaries and resident working team members have been selected and dispatched to carry out targeted poverty reduction since 2013.
Poverty relief assistants Liu Ying (1st L) and He Changle (2nd L), as well as village officers, help carry melons planted by villagers in Dongqin Village, Congjiang County of southwest China's Guizhou Province, Nov. 11, 2020. (Xinhua/Yang Wenbin)
Through continuous efforts, the final 98.99 million impoverished rural residents had all been lifted out of poverty, and all 832 impoverished counties and 128,000 villages had been removed from the poverty list by the end of 2020.
The historic achievements came with huge sacrifices. More than 1,800 CPC members and officials have lost their lives in the cause of poverty reduction, according to the paper.
"To help the poor, we must know who they are," the paper said.
During its poverty alleviation practices, China has developed a set of standards and procedures to accurately identify the poor, the causes of their poverty and their needs. These were summarized as targeted efforts in six areas, referring to efforts to identify the poor accurately, arrange targeted programs, utilize capital efficiently, take household-based measures, dispatch first Party secretaries based on village conditions, and achieve the set goals.
For instance, poor households are identified primarily based on their incomes, with consideration given to other factors including housing, education and health, while for villages, consideration is given to the incidence of poverty, the per capita net income of the villagers, and income from businesses run by village collectives.
The individuals and villages confirmed as poor were then registered and a national poverty alleviation information system was created.
"Through this registration system, for the first time in the history of poverty alleviation, China has identified every poor individual in every village," the paper said.
The strategy of targeted poverty alleviation is China's strongest "weapon" in its final battle against poverty, and a major innovation in the theory and practice of poverty reduction, which highlights the CPC's sound approach whereby all actions are based on actual conditions and conform to the needs of development, it said.
China's success in poverty alleviation has proven that the problem of poverty, in essence, is how the people should be treated: the people-centered philosophy is the fundamental driving force behind this cause.
Combo photo taken between July and October 2020 shows villagers, who used to be registered as impoverished households in over 20 cities and counties of northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, smiling as they have benefited from the businesses under poverty alleviation program. (Xinhua)
"The root cause of poverty is inadequate development," the paper said, adding that development is the most effective way to eradicate poverty.
During its fight against poverty, China has taken five measures, including boosting the economy to provide more job opportunities, relocating poor people from inhospitable areas, compensating for economic losses associated with reducing ecological damage, improving education in impoverished areas, and providing subsistence allowances for those unable to shake off poverty through their own efforts alone.
Over the course, investment from the central, provincial, city and county governments have totaled nearly 1.6 trillion yuan (about 244 billion U.S. dollars), including 660.1 billion yuan from the central budget.
China's successful practice and valuable experience in eliminating extreme poverty have deepened human understanding of poverty reduction trends, enriched the theory of international poverty reduction, and boosted the confidence of other countries, especially developing ones, in eradicating extreme poverty.
Aerial photo taken on June 14, 2020 shows a relocated area by the Gaqu River in Chido Township of Dengqen County in Qamdo, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. Qadom City has witnessed a total of 194,600 residents, 38,400 households, 1,127 villages and 11 counties get rid of poverty thanks to the poverty alleviation efforts. (Xinhua/Tian Jinwen)
Poverty is not predestined, nor is it unconquerable, the paper said. "China's experience in poverty alleviation indicates that courage, vision, sense of responsibility, and the eagerness to take on challenges are the most essential."