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China and the World in the New Era

China Daily | Updated: 2019-09-28 10:27

Box 1 China's Achievements in Poverty Elimination

Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, China has launched targeted poverty alleviation and made notable progress. China's rural impoverished population was reduced from 99 million in 2012 to 16.6 million in 2018, a total reduction of 82.4 million, down by 13 million every year on average. China's poverty incidence dropped from 10.2 percent to 1.7 percent, down by nearly 9 percentage points. In 2019, China planned to help at least another 10 million poor and about 330 poor counties out of poverty.

Over more than 40 years of reform and opening up since 1978, according to the World Bank's international poverty line of US$1.9 per person per day, more than 800 million Chinese population have shaken off poverty, accounting for more than 70 percent of the global figure over the same period. China has become the first developing country to realize the poverty reduction objective in the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres praised China as the largest contributor to global poverty reduction. In 2018, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution on eliminating rural poverty, which included the concept and practice of targeted poverty alleviation initiated by China. China has provided a wealth of experience for the global fight against poverty.

China has established a preliminary social security system covering elderly care, medical care, minimum subsistence, housing, and education - the largest in scale and covering the largest population in the world. By the end of 2018:

Participants in urban workers' basic elderly care insurance numbered 419 million;

Participants in unemployment insurance numbered 196 million;

Participants in work injury compensation insurance numbered 239 million;

Basic elderly care insurance covered more than 900 million people;

Basic medical insurance covered more than 1.3 billion people, almost everyone in the country.

Over the past 70 years, China's life expectancy has increased from 35 in 1949 to 77 in 2018, higher than the world's average of 72. Over the past 70 years, the Chinese people have witnessed profound changes in their mindset. They have carried forward fine traditional Chinese culture, spread modern Chinese values, and enriched and invigorated their cultural life. According to a global wellbeing report released by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in 2018, in the past decade, China's ranking rose by 25 places, the fastest rate among the 152 countries covered.

China's international position and influence have greatly improved. In 1971, China recovered its legitimate seat in the United Nations and began to play a more active role in international affairs. In April and May 1980, China recovered its legitimate seats in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank. In 2001, China joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) and began to participate more extensively and deeply in international economic and trade exchanges and cooperation. China has been making friends in the international community, having established diplomatic relations with 179 countries, and 110 partnerships of various types. Since the 18th CPC National Congress in 2012, China has proposed a global community of shared future and the Belt and Road Initiative, which have been written into many UN resolutions and have won extensive recognition and a warm response from the international community.

China's successes have been achieved through hard work. A large country with a nearly 1.4 billion population, China cannot achieve prosperity by asking for assistance and waiting. The only option is hard work. China relied on the solid and unremitting efforts of generations of Chinese people, which is represented in the typical case of "800 million shirts in exchange for a Boeing airplane". China relied on fulfilling its own responsibility in good times and in adversity, without exporting or shifting problems elsewhere, and without seeking development by trading under coercion or exploiting other countries. China relied on a pioneering spirit, like crossing the river by feeling for stones, neither retracing the steps of imperialism and colonialism, nor copying the development model of Western countries, but blazing its own path with bold experiments, based on its own conditions, experience and lessons as well as the achievements of other civilizations.

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