BEIJING — China lifted 68.53 million people out of poverty over the past five years, as it made impressive progress in poverty reduction, according to the State Council Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation and Development.
It was equivalent to an annual reduction of at least 13 million. The country’s poverty rate dropped from 10.2 percent in 2012 to 3.1 percent in 2017.
China aims to eliminate absolute poverty by 2020 as part of the creation of a moderately prosperous society.
There were around 30 million Chinese living below the national poverty line at the end of last year.
Policy makers have listed poverty alleviation as one of China’s “three tough battles” for the next three years, along with risk prevention and pollution control. The year 2018 is a key year.
More than 10 million people will shake off poverty in 2018. About 100 counties are expected to be removed from the poverty list, according to the leading group.
A county can be removed from the list if no more than 2 percent of its residents earn less than 2,300 yuan ($350) at 2010 prices. In China’s underdeveloped western regions, the threshold is 3 percent.
There were still 30.46 million rural people living below the national poverty line at the end of 2017, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).