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Pairing assistance success paves way for more

By CUI JIA | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-09-22 00:17

A Uygur family harvests ripe grapes in Turpan, Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region. [Photo/People's Daily Online]

More high-quality pairing assistance programs need to be introduced in the future to help the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region maintain stability and become more prosperous, China's top political advisor has said.

China has been implementing the pairing assistance programs in Xinjiang since 1997, channeling financial, technical and human resource support in various fields to Xinjiang, from 19 provinces and municipalities of the country, as well as central departments and state-owned enterprises.

Unprecedented efforts have been put in those programs in the new era and achieved obvious results, Wang Huning, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, told delegates at the ninth national meeting on pairing assistance to Xinjiang, held in Kashgar, from Tuesday to Thursday.

Wang said that the amount of funds invested, the number of people involved, and the achievements made are all unprecedented. It has fully demonstrated the advantages of the leadership of CPC and the socialist system with Chinese characteristics.

According to the regional government, more efforts have been put into pairing assistance programs since the national meeting on pairing assistance to Xinjiang was held in 2014. Since that time, historical progress has been made in helping the region achieve fast economic development, receive a record amount of funding in infrastructure constructions, and improve people's livelihood.

Over 170 billion yuan ($23.26 billion) of funding has been allocated to pairing assistance programs over the past decade, and more than 80 percent of the funds have been used to improve people's livelihood, especially in rural areas, the regional government said.Also, thanks to such programs, the living conditions of about 11 million people have been improved in the past 10 years while more than 2,100 schools have been built or renovated.

Furthermore, over 90,000 talents in education, technology and health care sectors have chosen to come to the region in the past 10 years to help to raise standards in those sectors that have been less developed than other parts of the country.

Wang said that comprehensive, targeted and long-term support to Xinjiang through pairing assistance programs must be provided as it is a national strategy. Also, it is important to firmly grasp the strategic positioning of Xinjiang in the overall national situation and build a beautiful Xinjiang in the process of pursuing Chinese modernization.

He also said pairing assistance programs need to focus on accelerating the construction of a modern industrial system that reflects Xinjiang's characteristics and advantages, so that Xinjiang will be able to advance on the track of high-quality development.

What is more, he said, further assistance must be given to help the region build a high-quality education system, and efforts should be made to promote cultural exchanges between different ethnic groups in Xinjiang and forge a strong sense of community for the Chinese nation.

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