President Hu Jintao on Wednesday announced China's five-component package to aid less-developed nations at the UN's 60th anniversary summit.
The package, which included tariff-free trade, debt relief, preferential credits as well as medical support and personnel training, is much bigger and more comprehensive than the programs China had allocated itself for the same purposes.
As a developing country, China, despite declining numbers, still has a large population living in poverty, and it is therefore offering what it can in this regard.
Amid discussions over a somewhat complicated agenda at the ongoing UN summit, China has highlighted the issue of poverty elimination and expressed its willingness to increase input that matches its capabilities.
China's proposed aid also reflects its endorsement for a multifaceted approach to poverty alleviation and sustained development.
International organizations for poverty relief have singled out China as an outstanding contributor to poverty reduction.
What China can offer to poorer nations also includes its own experiences in poverty reduction during the past quarter of the century.
As China becomes richer, the country is certain to further enhance its contribution to the global effort to stamp out poverty.
However, poverty alleviation is a course that needs continuous attention and concrete measures by all members of the international community.
Definitions for absolute poverty vary. But it is agreed that by any definition, in certain parts of the world, in particular Africa, little progress or even a regression in poverty reduction has occurred.
Using the US$1-a-day or less measurement, the World Bank has reported that the number of people in Africa living in extreme poverty almost doubled in 20 years, rising to 313 million in 2001 from 164 million in 1981.
Despite the wide recognition of the urgent need for poverty alleviation, there still remains a lack of total determination and well coordinated efforts at the international level.
Commitment to the issue has been repeated at high-profile meetings, but disagreements over how to reach this goal remain.
What is more concerning is that many rich countries have been slow in implementing agreed measures such as increasing the amount of official aid as a percentage of their gross national product.
Trade has been agreed as an important tool to cut poverty.
The current round of global trade talks was dubbed "Development Round" since its purpose was evident: to help developing countries become better off.
But the prospects of realizing the talks are still bleak, largely due to the lack of flexibility exhibited by developed nations.
When the world's leaders met in New York in 2000, they set the Millennium Development Goals, which, among others, aimed to halve absolute poverty by 2015.
With a considerably different global agenda from five years ago, they are now facing the challenge of convincing the world that they are still serious about that commitment.
(China Daily September 16, 2005)