Washington-The 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress opened at the Great Hall of the People on October 18, 2017. On behalf of the 18th Central Committee of the CPC, Xi Jinping delivered a report titled "Secure a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects and strive for the great success of socialism with Chinese characteristics for a new era."
In the report, Xi said that more than 60 million people have been lifted out of poverty over the past five years. He also emphasized the importance of winning the battle against poverty. "We must ensure that by the year 2020, all rural residents living below the current poverty line will have been out of poverty, and poverty is eliminated in all poor counties and regions. Poverty alleviation should reach those who truly need it and deliver genuine outcomes."
The US media National Public Radio (NPR) has created an article focused on China's efforts on poverty right after this. Its correspondent Rob Schmitz went to Guizhou Province and interviewed an 84-year-old resident, Mr. Yu Zu'en, who just moved in his new government-issued apartment.
"I wouldn't be here without Xi Jinping," Yu told NPR. "Under his wise leadership, we're now taken care of. Before, we barely survived. Our village was up in the mountains. Corn didn't grow well, no roads. Then the leaders mobilized us and the entire village moved here."
In his interview, Schmitz discovered that the local government had declared Above-the-Dragon village impoverished in May, because of that village's per capita income was under China's official poverty line. "So the government offered the residents new homes at Bright Field New Village, a housing project made up of dozens of white apartment blocks topped with red Spanish roof tiles on the outskirts of Guiyang, a city of 4 million residents and the capital of Guizhou," he wrote.
Sarah Rogers, a research fellow at the University of Melbourne, who made China's poverty alleviation the focus of her thesis, said to NPR in the article that under Xi, Chinese government has transformed how it tackles the issue. One big change has been evaluating local officials not just on GDP growth but on how well they alleviate poverty. "I think they have fundamentally changed the way they are doing things, and there's just so much more money flowing through the system…You've got a particular target for poverty alleviation," said Rogers. "If you don't meet that, you're in a bit of trouble."
Early this month, Xi Jinping has issued essential instructions related to the poverty reduction work. While recognizing the achievements and efforts made in this field so far, he urged all Party members, and indeed the whole society, to keep moving forward and win the battle against poverty.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has also urged all-out efforts to be undertaken in this regard, to ensure the overall poverty reduction goals can be fulfilled as planned.
Since the 18th CPC National Congress, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at the core has taken poverty elimination as the bottom-line, goal and landmark indicator for building a moderately prosperous society in all aspects. Poverty elimination forms part of the country's "five-in-one overall strategy" of promoting balanced economic, political, cultural, social, and ecological progress, and the country's "four-pronged comprehensive strategy" of building a moderately prosperous society in all aspects, deepening reform, advancing law-based governance, and strengthening Party self-governance.
A few days ago, the State Council Information Office held a briefing on China's poverty reduction progress on Oct. 10. At the press conference, Liu Yongfu, director of State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development, said the CPC would work in full force to push forward poverty alleviation with the guidance of the spirit of the 19th CPC National Congress. "The central government has established the goal of nationwide poverty elimination by 2020, when the entire impoverished rural population living below current poverty standards will be lifted out of poverty and there will not be a single 'poverty county'," Liu said.