Beijing, May 18 2017: Prof. Linxiu Zhang, Co-Director, UNEP-IEMP and Director at the Centre for Chinese Agricultural Policy (CCAP), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) gave a key note presentation sharing China’s poverty alleviation experiences under the theme of health and education at an ‘International Seminar on Sharing Experiences in Poverty Reduction in Belt and Road Countries’ during the recently concluded Belt and Road Summit held in Beijing.

The purpose of the Seminar was to provide a platform for China and other countries along the Belt and Road to learn from each other’s most valuable experiences in poverty reduction and discuss the feasibility of establishing a long-term mechanism for experience sharing and cooperation on poverty reduction.

In her presentation entitled, ‘Poverty Alleviation Through Investing in Health and Education: Experiences from China with implications to Belt and Road Countries’, Prof. Zhang stated the importance of early childhood education and providing nurturing support in the poverty areas. She emphasized on the urgency for public investment on rural human capacity as an effective way for long-term poverty reduction and achieving the sustainable development goals.

She said “I am deeply grateful to the organizers for inviting me. This is a subject of profound importance in our journey to achieve the SDGs. The Belt and Road countries have the potential to play a leadership role by exchanging best practices, knowledge sharing, forging new paths in meeting the challenges collectively”.

Prof. Zhang began her talk by highlighting the significance of poverty alleviation as a universal goal and shed light on the efforts and commitment made by the Chinese Government to address poverty through health, nutrition and education. She further highlighted pathbreaking efforts by some research groups such as Rural Education Action Program (REAP) which are at the forefront of promoting health and nutrition policy in China.

Prof. Zhang also discussed at length on the urgent need of breaking the poverty cycle by investing in early childhood development and see investment in children as part of the overall process of development. She further stated that it’s crucial that human capital inequality (pertaining to health and education) is also address in an adequate manner.

The Seminar discussed the way forward for sharing such poverty reduction experiences along the Belt and Road countries for our common sustainable development.

The event was co-hosted by the Delegation of the European Union to China (EUD), China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchanges (CICETE), International Poverty Reduction Center in China (IPRCC), and China Internet Information Center (CIIC). It was supported by EU-China Policy Dialogues Support Facility II (PDSF II).