China says poverty alleviation always at the top of President Xi's work agenda
Poverty alleviation is not only a solemn commitment made by the Chinese government to the people, but also a priority of Chinese President Xi Jinping's work agenda, government officials told reporters on Tuesday.
The remarks were made at a press conference where China's State Council Information Office issued a white paper titled "Poverty Alleviation: China's Experience and Contribution" to introduce China's achievement and efforts made to complete the task.
According to the white paper, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi at the core takes the desire of the people for a better life as its goal and is committed to realizing the Chinese Dream of national rejuvenation and securing a decisive victory in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.
President Xi has devoted much of his energy to poverty alleviation, and presented a series of important ideas, proposals and major policy decisions to achieve it.
The 18th CPC National Congress in 2012 set the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects. Soon after that, Xi enunciated, "To achieve initial prosperity in the countryside, it is essential to raise rural living standards and particularly those of impoverished villagers."
Launching the campaign against poverty in the new era, he also emphasized, "No single poor area or single poor person should be left behind in achieving this goal."
In 2013, on his inspection tour to Shibadong Village, Huayuan County, Hunan Province, Xi proposed for the first time the concept of "giving differentiated guidance for targeted poverty alleviation in line with local conditions by seeking truth from facts."
In 2014, while attending the deliberation session of the Guizhou delegation at the Second Plenary Session of the 12th National People's Congress, Xi stated, "Inspection tours must be conducted to identify the truly poor. Poverty alleviation must reach those who truly need it, and poverty must be fully eliminated."
In 2015, at the National Conference on Development-driven Poverty Alleviation, he sounded the bugle call to battle, "We should be determined, dedicate ourselves, and work hard towards the goal."
In 2017, in the report to the 19th CPC National Congress, Xi emphasized the need to mobilize the energies of the whole Party, the whole country, and the whole of society to win the battle against extreme poverty and eradicate it.
"Ensuring that poor people and poor areas will enter the moderately prosperous society together with the rest of the country is a solemn promise made by our Party … We must win the battle against poverty," Xi pointed out.
In 2020, faced with the sudden attack of COVID-19, Xi mapped out new plans for mobilization at a seminar on poverty alleviation, emphasizing that lifting poor people in the rural areas out of poverty "must be achieved as scheduled."
"It is non-negotiable. This is a tough battle with no route of retreat. We must double our efforts till the last minute. We must not pause, slacken off or be negligent," Xi stressed.
Moreover, Xi also assumed leadership, made plans, and directed the battle in person. He attended the National Conference on Development-driven Poverty Alleviation, presided over seven seminars on poverty elimination and made over 50 fact-finding trips.
In every one of the last five years, he reviewed the evaluation reports of the poverty alleviation work. In every one of the last seven years, he attended important events or issued directives on the National Poverty Alleviation Day as well as expounded the idea in his New Year address.
In every one of the last eight years, he discussed plans for the battle against poverty with delegates during the Two Sessions and written letters to encourage grassroots officials and communities to engage in the great fight.
According to the white paper, Xi has visited every one of the 14 contiguous poor areas across the country and over 20 poor villages, and sat in the homes of impoverished households to hear of their difficulties, suggestions, and needs, building up their confidence and determination, and their belief that they can work their way out of poverty.
It is with such efforts that China, under the leadership of the CPC, completed the arduous task of eradicating extreme poverty on February 25, 2021, 10 years ahead of schedule, and left another outstanding achievement in history.
(With input from Xinhua)
(Cover: A village in Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Ethnic Autonomous Prefecture, central China's Hunan Province, March 4, 2021. /CFP)