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Poverty Alleviation Tasks Announced
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The State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development announced six tasks for the 11th Five-Year Plan period (2006-2010) at a forum in Dalian, in the northeastern province of Liaoning, on October 17, the 13th UN International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.


The group’s director, Liu Jian, told the China Poverty Alleviation and Development Forum that poverty alleviation in China is already in a key phase.


Gu Xiulian, vice chairwoman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress and president of the All-China Women's Federation, said China is a strong force in global anti-poverty work, and the only country to realize UN Millennium Development Goals.


Liu said the 26.1 million Chinese who could not get adequate food and clothing and the additional 49.77 million who didn’t have enough income to maintain food and clothing needs by the end of 2004 should be targeted for help.


In 2003, 14.6 million people in poverty got adequate food and clothing, but 15.4 million returned to poverty, causing an overall increase in poverty that year.


Liu said the six tasks identified were:


To continue working on poverty reduction through development projects, assisted by grants;


To ensure poverty alleviation focuses on solving the problems of people who cannot get adequate food and clothing and those who aren’t able to maintain their food and clothing needs;


To keep records of people in poverty so that their access to benefits are assured;


To attach equal importance to natural and human resource development, to guarantee nine-year compulsory education and provide more training;


To ensure comprehensive and harmonious development of economy and society, and to accelerate poverty eradication; and


To direct and mobilize all of society in poverty alleviation. To respect the participation of the poor in society, listen to their suggestions and build a harmonious society.


Liu also said the “Model of Villagers Participation in Poverty-relief Development” being piloted in rural areas has seen achievements in 29,900 of 148,000 poor villages and is being promoted in another 30,000 villages.


The achievements included progress in infrastructure construction, culture and education, medicine and health, farmers’ incomes, industrial development, village appearance, democracy and legal systems, and the construction of basic organizations, said Liu.


(China.org.cn by Xu Lin, October 26, 2005)

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