Intro: A top official from the World Bank believes that China can eradicate extreme poverty by 2020.
“Eradicating extreme poverty by 2020 is indeed an ambitious goal, but we are absolutely convinced that China will achieve that goal—but not without the initiative of individuals, of companies, and of governments all around the system to make poverty alleviation work,” said Mr. Bert Hoffman, World Bank Country Director for China, Mongolia and Korea.
Ahead of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, Mr. Hofman sat down for an exclusive interview with China.org.cn.
Last December, China set a goal to lift the remaining 55 million poor people out of poverty by 2020. The international community also pledged to eradicate extreme poverty in the world by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals passed by the UN last year.
He stressed that continuing to invest in poor people is one of the keys to achieving these goals. “Making sure that their education system is up to speed and also that their health system and their health insurance is up to speed—health is important and an important cause of poverty. This requires better targeting of public programs and of public planning, so it requires a bit of reforms,” he said.
Also, China’s social safety net – the Dibao (basic living allowances) system – needs to be redesigned. “We need to make sure that the system is very versatile, is well-targeted, and can also absorb new people into the system and graduate people from the system if they are no longer poor,” he added.
October 17 this year marks China's third Poverty Alleviation Day. Meanwhile, the country has issued the 2016 National Awards for Poverty Alleviation on Sunday, a national honor for those who excel in fighting poverty.