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NEW YORK: Pakistan has congratulated China on achieving the poverty eradication target 10 years ahead of the schedule set by the UN, saying the feat is nothing short of a “miracle”.

“Never before in the history have 770 million people been taken out of extreme poverty in a span of 35 years,” Ambassador Munir Akram said at a virtual event organized by the Chinese Mission to the UN on Wednesday.

Ambassador Akram, who is also the President of UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), spoke after a briefing by Chinese Ambassador Zhang Juan on Eradicating Poverty Practice in China: Promoting Implementation of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

On Feb 25, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that China has secured a ‘complete victory’ in its fight against poverty.

President Xi, also General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, said absolute poverty has been eradicated in the world’s most populous country, home to over 1.4 billion people.

In his remarks, the Pakistani envoy said that World Bank’s statistics show that since the late 1970s, China is responsible for over 70% of the global reduction in poverty over the period.

“I think the fruit of this ‘victory’ against poverty transcends China,” Ambassador Akram said, adding it has promoted human rights as well as social and sustainable development.

In this context, he quoted Prime Minister Imran Khan as saying that the “Chinese experience can be a source of guidance for developing countries.”

“China’s Belt and Road Initiative and its flagship project the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), are examples of what President Xi has called ‘common prosperity’,” the Pakistani envoy said.

“We must all redouble national efforts and international cooperation to fight and eradicate poverty which is our common enemy and in President’s Xi’s words, build a community of shared future for humankind,” Ambassador Akram added.

In a tweet after the event, the Chinese ambassador endorsed his Pakistani counterpart’s views, saying that eradicating poverty is the biggest human right.

“China’s achievement on poverty eradication owes to strong political leadership and collective efforts of the Chinese people,” Ambassador Zhang said, adding it belongs to the world.

“China will work together with Pakistan to promote UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” he added.

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