Chinese President Xi Jinping on February 25 announced that China has eradicated extreme poverty at a national commendation conference, during which he honored those who contributed to this remarkable achievement in human history.
Xi said that 770 million rural residents have been lifted above the current poverty line since the beginning of reform and opening-up over 40 years ago.
A total of 10 people and 10 collective units from different strata of the Chinese society have been awarded national honorary titles for their contributions.
Those honored come from diverse backgrounds, from a 98-year-old researcher to a young grassroots level official.
Xi hailed the country’s achievements in eradicating extreme poverty, calling it a miracle of history. He said China’s accomplishments also set a pioneering example for the international community.
“We have created a China model for poverty reduction. And we’ve made great contributions to the global reduction of poverty. Based on the current poverty standard, 770 million rural people have been lifted out of poverty in China since reform and opening-up began. And according to the international poverty line set by the World Bank, China accounts for 70 percent of the world’s total which have been lifted out of poverty. China has achieved the poverty reduction goals set by the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development 10 years ahead of the deadline,” President Xi said.
Over the past eight years, nearly 100 million impoverished rural residents living below the current poverty line have managed to escape extreme poverty.
Xi, also General Secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, presented medals, certificates and plaques to the following recipients:
Mao Xianglin, the CPC branch secretary of Xiazhuang Village, Zhuxian Town, Wushan County of Chongqing Municipality, spent seven years leading people to build a road linking the mountainous region to the outside world.
Bai Jingying, inheritor of Wangfu Embroidery and head of the embroidery industry-driven poverty eradication team in Horqin Right Wing Middle Banner in north China’s Inner Mongolia, has held many workshops to teach ethnic Mongolian embroidery to rural women as a way for them to generate income.
Liu Hu, the director of the Water Conservancy Bureau of Jiashi County, Kashgar Prefecture, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, has been committed to bringing clean drinking water to the impoverished population and solve water shortages in the local area.
Li Yu from the Chinese Academy of Sciences has spent the last 30 years researching the science of fungi and edible fungus engineering technology and industrialization in Jilin Province.
Zhang Xiaojuan, who died at the age of 34 in a traffic accident while on duty on October 7, 2019, devoted her life to local poverty eradication work. She was the deputy chief of the Zhouqu County’s poverty eradication and development office in northwest China’s Gansu Province and had visited every single household in 87 poor villages to help solve their difficulties.
Zhang Guimei is a teacher who dedicated 40 years of her life to helping and motivating young girls from impoverished families in the mountainous areas of southwest China's Yunnan Province to pursue higher education.
Zhao Yafu is an agricultural researcher who worked in the Chinese countryside for over 48 years, teaching farmers advanced planting techniques and helping them raise the yield and incomes.
Jiang Shikun, the late former secretary of the CPC Committee of Qinglong County, Guizhou Province, was a pioneer in devising plans for targeted poverty eradication in the county and promoting rural tourism. He died of a heart attack in 2016.
Xia Sen, a retired researcher from the Bureau of Foreign Affairs of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, has been involved in promoting children's education in poverty-stricken areas. She has sponsored 182 students from disadvantaged families to attend college.
Huang Wenxiu, the Party chief of Baini Village in Leye County in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, helped 88 poor households shake off poverty during her tenure between 2018 and 2019. On June 17, 2019, Huang was killed in a mudslide en route to check on villagers.
The 10 outstanding groups are:
– Saihanba Mechanical Forest Farm of Hebei Province
– Dawan Village, Huashi Township, Jinzhai County of Anhui Province
– The CPC Xiadang Township Committee in Shouning County, Fujian Province
– Yeping Township, Ruijin City, Jiangxi Province
– Shibadong Village, Shuanglong Township, Huayuan County of Hunan Province
– Sanhe Village of Sanchahe Township in Zhaojue County of Liangshan Yi Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan Province
– Department of Rural Electrification of Tibet Electric Power Company, State Grid
– Haojiaqiao Village, Zhangjiabian Township, Suide County of Shaanxi Province
– Banyan New Village, Wushi Township, Huzhu Tu Autonomous County, Haidong City, Qinghai Province
– Minning Township, Yongning County of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region