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    Four Decades of Poverty Reduction in China: Drivers, Insights for the World, and the Way Ahead
    (Washington, DC : World Bank, 2022) World Bank ; Development Research Center of the State Council, the People’s Republic of China
    Regardless of the poverty line used, the speed and scale of China’s poverty reduction are historically unprecedented. Over the past 40 years, the number of people in China with incomes below US$1.90 per day—the international poverty line as defined by the World Bank to track global extreme poverty—has fallen by close to 800 million, accounting for almost three-quarters of the global reduction in extreme poverty. In 2021, China declared that it had eradicated extreme poverty according to its national poverty threshold, and that it had built a “moderately prosperous society in all respects.” However, a significant number of people remain vulnerable, with incomes below a threshold more typically used to define poverty in upper-middle-income countries. China has set a new goal of approaching common prosperity by 2035, which can help keep the policy focus on the vulnerable population. Four Decades of Poverty Reduction in China: Drivers, Insights for the World, and the Way Ahead explores the key drivers of China’s poverty alleviation achievements and considers the lessons of China’s experience for other developing countries. The report also makes suggestions for China’s future policies. China’s approach to poverty reduction was based on two pillars. The first aimed for broad-based economic transformation to open new economic opportunities and raise average incomes. The second was the recognition that targeted support was needed to alleviate persistent poverty; this support was initially provided to disadvantaged areas and later to individual households. The success of China’s economic development and the associated reduction of poverty also benefited from effective governance, which helped coordinate multiple government agencies and induce cooperation from nongovernment stakeholders. To illustrate the role of broad-based economic transformation for poverty alleviation, separate sections of the report analyze growing agricultural productivity, incremental industrialization, managed urbanization and rural-to-urban migration, and the role of infrastructure.