China, Africa compare notes on poverty alleviation at Uganda meeting

Thursday, December 19th, 2019 11:11 |
Chen Zhigang, deputy head of China's State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development, speaks during the 2019 Africa-China Poverty Reduction and Development Conference in Kampala, Uganda, Nov. 28, 2019. (Xinhua/Hajarah Nalwadda)

African and Chinese government representatives, experts and the private sector are gathering here to share experiences that aim to pull millions of Africans out of poverty. 

The 2019 Africa-China Poverty Reduction and Development Conference is scheduled for Nov. 28-29. It is held under the auspices of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), an umbrella framework that covers all fields of cooperation between China and Africa. 

The conveners of the meeting told a pre-event news conference here on Wednesday that Africa can draw lessons from China, which was at the same level of development in 1970s but is now the world's second largest economy. 

Li Xin, Director of Foreign Affairs Division, International Poverty Reduction Center in China said China implemented targeted poverty alleviation strategies, whereby each household hit by poverty is asked what are their challenges and how best they can be lifted out of poverty. 

"In our country we find out who is poor and why the household is poor so that we can tailor-make the assistance that the household needs. We registered each and every household that is below the national poverty line," Li said. 

"To tackle poverty, we need very good policies, best policy practices, instruments, and also the knowledge to better help the people." Li said. 
   China, according to Li, integrates poverty reduction policies into its overall economic and social development plan. 

"Poverty reduction is almost on the top of our development agenda. Our leaders attach much importance to poverty reduction," she said. 

Li said Africa can pick lessons from China's development path since 1978 when it opened up. 

"What we can do, you can also do, with 40 years of development by the end of 2018, we only have 1.7 percent (16.6 million) of our population still left behind and by the end of 2020, all will be lifted out of poverty." Li said. 

Christopher Kibanzanga, Uganda's minister of state for agriculture told reporters that Africa is already picking up lessons from China regarding poverty alleviation efforts. 

"We learn from China that for them it was a shared vision, common mission and that the population will follow the leadership," said Kibanzanga. 

"We must define what we want in order to benefit from the cooperation that we have with our serious and genuine partners," he added. 

Kibanzanga said government representatives, experts and scholars who are gathering here, will meet under the theme, "Partnership for Transformation in Africa". 

He said the aim is to build a new international partnership and promote poverty reduction and development in African countries through knowledge sharing. 

He said this will be the 10th year they are meeting since 2010 when the Africa-China Poverty Reduction and Development Conference started. 

Over 150 delegates including 50 from China, 70 from Africa and 30 from international organizations are expected to attend the meeting that will be addressed by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni as the keynote speaker. (Xinhua) 

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