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New Poverty Reduction Strategy of China echoes similar objectives with the new IFAD strategic framework

The ten year Poverty Reduction Strategy (PSR) of the government of China for 2011-2020 has more or less been shaped. A final version is being circulately internally within the government system, especially the poverty reduction system for discussion and digestion.  A formal publicizing is anticipated after the government has organized a national poverty reduction conference to be presided by the state leaders sometime in October/November 2011.

The new SPR will take more subjectively the poverty criteria, which presently at 1196 Yuan per capita of annual income was much questioned of being low in comparison with international standards, even below the low income line of many provinces, creating contradiction of the poverty reduction with the Di Bao policy implemented by the ministry of civil affairs who is supposed to cover the lowest strata of the poverty population.  Though the new PSR will not likely set an explicit criteria, but it is alomst certain that the criteria will be gradually increaesd and will leave flexbilities for provinces to adjust to suit its own development status and poverty situation. The national poverty line will be the bottom line and the provincial level will be flexible but in no way lower than the national one.

The new PSR will give priority to reducing poverty in about 17 block areas, mostly being the traditional revolutionary bases, minority concentrated areas, border areas and high concentration of poverty areas.  More resources can be anticipated for the new PSR. A new round of requalification of poverty areas has been underway in the provinces, successful villages, counties and areas considered eligible for coverage of the new PSR may anticipate substaintial central and sometimes provincial fiscal transfer. Much internal work is being done for that sake to balance every factors.

Interestingly also the new PSR will build on and consolidate the acheivements in satisfying food and clothing so far, and give priority to a higher level of objecives such as capacity building for self-development, increase income and reverse the trend of gap widening, eco-environment conservation to strengthen resilience and development sustainability, 

It can be seen that many areas of focus resonate the similar objectives that the IFAD new strategic framework has prioritized, such as increasing on and off farm income, enhance poors' resilience to market and environmental threats, enhancing farmer's own organization and development capacity.  Several cross cutting aspects like participation, innovation, knowledge management and gender sensitivity are being given similar attention.

Much can be anticiapted for the IFAD Country Program when it is closely complimented by and aligned with governemnt counterpart financing.

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