LHASA, April 8 (Xinhua) — Southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region lifted 1,705 villages out of poverty last year, according to local authorities.
A total of 150,000 people were pulled out of poverty last year, bringing the impoverished population in the region from 590,000 in 2015 to 330,000 last year.
A total of 16.7 billion yuan (2.6 billion U.S. dollars) was invested in 2017 to help locals increase income, relocate and support the development of over 1,700 anti-poverty projects in the region.
More than 85 percent of the land in Tibet is located more than 4,000 meters above sea level. Harsh natural conditions have been part of the causes of entrenched poverty.
People in a total of 2,440 villages still live in dire poverty in Tibet, and the region plans to invest 11.7 billion yuan this year to lift another 2,100 villages out of poverty. It also aims for an annual growth of 16 percent in disposable income for people living under the poverty line, which is defined as a per capita annual income of 2,300 yuan at 2010 prices.
The region will also continue to expand social security coverage to improve living conditions for people with disabilities, no income, inability to work, as well as for teenagers under 16 and senior people above 60.
China aims to lift all citizens out of poverty by 2020 to create a “moderately prosperous society.” There were around 30 million Chinese still living below the national poverty line at the end of last year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.