Chinese President declares efforts to eradicate rural poverty are ‘complete victory’

Beijing has taken credit for Xi’s leadership in lifting nearly 100 million people out of poverty over the past eight years. (AP photo)

BEIJING: President Xi Jinping declared “complete victory” in China’s efforts to eradicate rural poverty at a ceremony Thursday in Beijing to celebrate what had been a distinct initiative for his tenure.

China credits Xi’s leadership with lifting nearly 100 million people out of poverty over the past eight years, with state media framing the achievement as an early birthday gift for the ruling Communist Party’s centenary this year.

On Wednesday, the People’s Daily, the party’s main newspaper, ran a more than two-page commentary praising the “historic leap” to vanquish poverty under Xi.

China defines extreme rural poverty as a per capita income of less than 4,000 yuan every year, or about $ 1.52 a day. This compares with the World Bank’s global threshold of $ 1.90 per day.

In “Policy Document No. 1” released on Sunday, China pledged to stick to its poverty alleviation policies, with some adjustments made for a five-year transition toward what Beijing calls “rural revitalization.”

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