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UNDP Microcredit Projects Benefit 300,000 Chinese People
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The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has disbursed microcredit, nearing US$20 million, to more than 300,000 clients all over China since 1994, its Beijing office said Tuesday.


Helped by the China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchange (CICETE), the program first established grassroots Rural Development Associations (RDAs) in the southwestern Yunnan Province, which gradually spread to 48 counties in 16 provinces.


Training, participation, and empowerment are at the core of UNDP microcredit projects, the office said in a statement.


In addition to the disbursement of funds, the UNDP supports capacity development to provide clients with business and life skills, thus empowering them to realize the full potential of the loans.


With this explicit core strategy, and by successfully targeting and reaching the poorest people, the projects have achieved good repayment rates and demonstrated the potential of microcredit as an effective tool for poverty reduction in China, the statement said.


(Xinhua News Agency November 9, 2005)


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