Phase I: 1986-2013 Regional Poverty Alleviation
1986 National-level Poverty-stricken Counties
China established the State Council Leading Group Office for Poverty Alleviation and Development and introduced the list of 331 national-level poverty-stricken counties.
1986 Poverty Alleviation Policies
Providing loan interest subsidies.
Launching technological and social poverty alleviation.
1995 Compulsory Education
Aiding compulsory education in poor regions.
1996 Credit Loan
Launching pilots of micro-finance.
2001 The program of boosting the whole village toward poverty alleviation and development
Launching the whole-village-toward-poverty-alleviation-and-
Issuing the Outline for Poverty Reduction and Development of China’s Rural Areas (2001-2010)
2004 Poverty Alleviation Plan
Promoting training for rural labor forces and industrial poverty alleviation
Initiating the “Two Basics” program for universal coverage of the nine-year compulsory education and eradicate illiteracy among middle age and young people in the western area of China.
2006 Mutual Assistance Funds
Promoting village-level mutual assistance funds for poverty-stricken villages.
2007-2013 Gradual promotion
2007 Launching the subsistence allowances system.
2011 Launching regional development.
2012 Implementing three special projects for students from poor and rural areas to enter key colleges and universities.
2013 Proposing targeted poverty alleviation.
President Xi Jinping first proposed the strategy of “targeted poverty alleviation” when visiting Shibadong Village, Hunan Province in central China in November 2013.
Phase II: 2014— Targeted Poverty Alleviation
—From 2013 to 2015, China allocated 24.78 billion yuan ($3.78 billion) to extend power grids to areas without electricity, benefiting some 1.55 million people. By the end of 2015, China had achieved full electricity coverage for its entire population.
—In April 2014, the State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development issued a work plan on the registration of the poor population, mobilizing millions of grassroots cadres across the country to carry out poverty identification. During the process, 128,000 villages, 29.32 million households, and 89.62 million people were identified as poor, according to national standards and procedures on poverty reduction. A database was established for every single impoverished person.
—In October 2014, China observed the first National Poverty Relief Day on October 17.
—The Shibadong Village, the birthplace of “targeted poverty alleviation,” dropped its “poverty-stricken” label in 2016.
—In February 2017, Jinggangshan, the heartland of the early revolutionary activities of the CPC, announced that it had been officially taken off the list of impoverished areas.
—In October 2017, the 2017 Global Poverty Reduction and Development Forum kicked off in Beijing. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres sent a letter of congratulation to the meeting commending China’s poverty-reduction strategy. He said that China had lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty and China’s poverty-alleviation experience could provide useful lessons for other developing countries.
—In 2017, China completed the renovation and upgrading of rural power grids in small towns and central villages, electrified motor-pumped wells, and supplied poor villages with electricity for industrial and commercial use, benefiting 78,000 villages and 160 million rural residents.
—In February 2018, the number of rural people living in poverty had dropped from 98.99 million at the end of 2012 to 30.46 million at the end of 2017, and 68.53 million people had been lifted out of poverty in the past five years, a reduction of about 70 percent.
—In May 2019, Yan’an, a former revolutionary base of the CPC, was officially taken off the list of impoverished areas.
—Huang Wenxiu, who led the poverty-alleviation efforts in a village in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, died in a rain-induced flash flood on June 17, 2019, at the age of 30.
Over the past eight years, over 1,500 poverty-alleviation cadres in the country had died in the battle against poverty.
—In 2019, China completed a new round of rural grid transformation and upgrading, achieving a supply reliability rate of 99.8 percent and an integrated voltage qualification rate of 97.9 percent.
—In March 2020, a symposium on securing a decisive victory in poverty alleviation was held in Beijing, the largest of its kind since the 18th CPC National Congress.
—In May 2020, the registered poor households of the village of Atulieer atop a cliff in Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture, in China’s Sichuan Province, moved to a newly built community.
Since 2016, more than 600 billion yuan had been invested in building new homes for 9.6 million people struggling in extreme poverty.
—In October 2020, China’s Tibet Autonomous Region accomplished the historical feat of eradicating absolute poverty. By the end of 2019, Tibet had lifted 628,000 people out of poverty and removed 74 county-level areas from the poverty list.
—In November 2020, China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, with over 25 million people of various ethnic groups, bid farewell to absolute poverty, with the last 10 impoverished counties managing to end absolute poverty.
—In November 2020, Xihaigu, once one of the world’s most uninhabitable places due to harsh environment, achieved a historic feat in eliminating absolute poverty, with the last poor county in the region removed from the country’s list of poverty-stricken counties.
—In 2020, rural residents’ per capita disposable income reached 17,131 yuan, up 6.9 percent in nominal terms and 3.8 percent in real terms from a year earlier. The nominal and actual rates for rural residents grew 3.4 percent and 2.6 percent faster than that of urban residents.
—By the end of 2020, nearly 100 million impoverished rural residents had escaped poverty. All 832 national-level poverty-stricken counties had shaken off poverty.
-More than 90% of registered poor received support for employment or technical training.
-More than two-thirds of poor population shook off poverty by migrant working and developing industries.
-22 provinces in central and western China identified 116,000 poverty alleviation products.
-Over 19 million poor patients received treatment. Nearly 10 million households who were impoverished by illness have been lifted out of poverty.
Sources: State Council Information Office, Xinhua News Agency, and CGTN