Xi boasts of Chinese ‘miracle’ in tackling poverty

AFP, Beijing

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursdaydeclared his country had achieved the “human miracle” of eliminating extreme poverty.

In a glitzy ceremony in Beijing, Xi bestowed medals on officials from rural communities, some wearing traditional ethnic-minority attire, and promised to share this “Chinese example” with other developing nations.

“No other country can lift hundreds of millions of people out of poverty in such a short time,” Xi said.

“A human miracle has been created that will go down in history.”

China last year claimed it had achieved its goal of lifting all of its people above a poverty line of $2.30 in daily income.

The World Bank says China has lifted more than 800 million people out of extreme poverty since turning to market reforms in the 1970s.

China is now providing help to developing countries still struggling with poverty, Xi said.

In 2015, Xi vowed to eradicate extreme poverty by 2020, a pillar of the Communist Party’s goal to build a “moderately prosperous society” by the 100th anniversary of its founding later this year.

Ahead of the deadline, the government poured billions of yuan into infrastructure like roads and modern apartment buildings, and offered tax incentives and subsidies to impoverished rural communities.

The standard of living in China has changed dramatically since the 1970s, with hundreds of millions living consumer lifestyles that past generations could not have imagined.