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Interview: Renowned economist says China’s poverty alleviation provides lessons for developing countries

Abstract : Despite varied circumstances in different countries, China's poverty alleviation efforts provide valuable lessons for developing countries across the globe, said renowned economist and bestselling author Jeffrey Sachs.

by Xiong Maoling, Tan Yixiao

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) — Despite varied circumstances in
different countries, China’s poverty alleviation efforts provide
valuable lessons for developing countries across the globe, said
renowned economist and bestselling author Jeffrey Sachs.

“There are a lot of lessons about long-term development that come
from China’s experience during the last 40 years,” Sachs, director of
the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University, told
Xinhua in a recent video interview.

Sachs laid out three key lessons from China’s practice, with the first one being setting clear goals.

“Targets are very important in human life because they keep us
focused. They keep us moving forward,” he said. “The lack of goals can
really weaken a society.”

The second lesson is good capacity for planning, Sachs said,
highlighting China’s National Development and Reform Commission and the
whole planning structure.

“So creating a framework able to look ahead in a systematic way and
plan for five-to 10-year horizons what to do is extremely important,” he
said.

The third is a broad-based strategy that combines public investment
and market-based growth in infrastructure, healthcare and education.
“It’s the combination of the two that has been very effective,” Sachs
said.

As China’s impoverished population decreases, China’s role in the global economy is expanding in many ways, said the economist.

“China’s demand for imports from overseas boosts trade and global
demand. China’s enormous supply of low-cost and high-quality
infrastructure is vital for developing countries aiming to expand their
own infrastructure,” he said. “All of these bring important benefits for
the world economy.”

While extreme poverty has ended, there are still living standard gaps
between China’s urban and rural areas, and the productivity in many
rural areas is still relatively low, Sachs said.

Looking forward, Sachs said China should do what it has been doing
for decades. “I would hope that China would keep that view of the longer
term because it has served China very well,” he said.

The economist said he would like to see the Belt and Road Initiative
“really expanded” in the coming years as a way to create more investment
in green and digital infrastructure in developing countries “as a basis
for their continued economic development.”

He also called on China, the United States and the European Union to
work together to address global challenges and build more inclusive and
fair societies with lower inequality. Enditem

About Xinhua Silk Road

Xinhua Silk Road (en.imsilkroad.com) is the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) portal.China’s silk road economic belt and the 21st century maritime silk road website,includes BRI Policy, BRI Trade, BRI Investment, Belt and Road weekly, Know Belt and Road, and the integrated information services for the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

Source: Interview: Renowned economist says China’s poverty alleviation provides lessons for developing countries

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