Q: The Chinese Government put forward the goal of building a well-off society in an all-around way right after China's transformation from poverty to adequate subsistence at the end of last century. How many aspects are there to this goal and how will the Chinese Government lead its people to achieve it?
A: On the whole, the Chinese people began to enjoy comparatively well-off standard of living in 2000 after 20 years of reform and opening up, which is a marvelous achievement in the history of China. However, the government is fully aware that this standard is still at a relatively low level, is not all-inclusive and is very uneven. There are still 30 million people who are not adequately fed and clad in China's central and western regions and some rural areas, and some urban residents live below the poverty line. These people are far from being well off. In this regard, the government arrived at the goal of building a well-off society in an all-around way to accomplish common prosperity for all people of the nation.
The goal, which conforms to the country's national conditions and its ongoing modernization drive, as well as the aspiration of the general public, is expected to take about 50 years to accomplish by three phases.
The period between 2000-10 is the primary stage, with the objective of maintaining the sustained, rapid and sound development of the national economy, doubling the GDP of the year 2000, and enabling the Chinese people, especially those in the rural areas, to enjoy a better-off life.
The period between 2010-20 is the mid-term stage, with the objective of rural residents generally leading an overall affluent life following the development of rural industrialization and urbanization, and urban residents gaining further prosperity. At this stage, a wealthy society will be achieved.
The period between 2020-50 is the late stage, by which time, China will have realized its general objective to accomplish modernization by and large and grown into a prosperous, strong, democratic and culturally advanced socialist country with a development level approaching that of medium-level developed countries.
In building a well-off society in an all-around way, it is imperative for China to vigorously develop the rural economy and increase the income of farmers, as it is a developing country where farmers constitute the majority of its population. Without the rural population living a well-off life, can the target of a well-off China never be achieved; likewise, China will never accomplish national modernization unless its rural areas attain modernization. Meanwhile, we will also push forward urbanization in an energetic and steady manner, and further our effort in developing the western region, accelerating the economic development of west China and intensifying development-oriented poverty reduction program. To eliminate poverty and narrow the gap between the east and the west will remain a major task for the Chinese Government in the first two decades of this century.
With a view to achieving the well-rounded development of its people, China is working to build a sound national education system and a technological and cultural innovation system, which will provide its people with a better education and help uplift their scientific and educational attainments.
The first two decades of the 21st century are an important period of strategic opportunity for China. During this period, we will concentrate on building a well-off society of a higher standard in an all-round way to the benefit of more than 1 billion people. We will further develop the economy, improve democracy, advance science and education, enrich culture, foster social harmony and upgrade the texture of life for the people. Then, at the middle of this century, when China's modernization is wholly realized, we will witness a much stronger country and a more prosperous society.
China's economic development is uneven. Pictured is a rural family in Henan Province which cannot afford farming machines.