Guizhou Poverty Reduction: 7 million lifted out of poverty in 5 years
One of China's poorest areas might also be one of its most improved. In recent years, Guizhou Province has suddenly lifted millions out of poverty. Now, with the nation just over a year away from its goal of eliminating extreme poverty, some are pointing to Guizhou's success as an inspiration. CGTN's Sun Tianyuan reports.
Nestled high in the mountains of Southwest China, Guizhou is one of the nation's poorest provinces. Fighting poverty has long been a top priority for the area. As the old Chinese saying goes: to get rich, build a road first.
SUN ZHIGANG SECRETARY, CPC GUIZHOU PROVINCIAL COMMITTEE "We have been building expressways and high speed railways to connect the province to other parts of the country. And more importantly, we are building paved roads to connect every village. We are also making sure every village has tap water, electricity, and internet. For people living high in the mountains, we are relocating them to more hospitable areas."
Back in 1978 Guizhou had more than 18 million people living in poverty. To reduce that number, the province has spent the last six years relocating more than 1.8 million to more accommodating areas. In 2018 Guizhou's impoverished population fell to 1.5 million. The poverty rate dropped to 4.3% in 2018 from 26.8% five years earlier. Secretary Sun says the focus now is making sure the relocated villagers are taken care of.
SUN ZHIGANG SECRETARY, CPC GUIZHOU PROVINCIAL COMMITTEE "We have introduced enterprises and cooperatives to rural areas, as well as higher yields and more profitable crops. We need to make sure the relocated population is employed and has stable income. We also need to provide education and healthcare coverage for them."
Guizhou has made great progress in poverty reduction. But much work remains to ensure its population does not return to poverty.