Poverty elimination achieved, goal is now common prosperity
A farmer harvests edible roses on a plantation in Bijie, Guizhou province. LUO DAFU/FOR CHINA DAILY
The central authorities highlighted the urgency and necessity of realizing common prosperity in the process of advancing high-quality development in a meeting in Beijing last week. The meeting of the Central Committee for Financial and Economic affairs caught the attention of the public as it touched upon this sensitive issue of broad concern.
After more than 40 years of development, almost all social groups have benefited, but to different degrees. To realize common prosperity will no longer only be a vision of the country, but a practical development goal for which action plans are being drawn up. The authorities will implement systematic measures to address the challenge of income gaps, as well as other issues related to social fairness and justice.
The elimination of abject rural poverty and the realization of a moderately well-off society in all aspects has laid a solid foundation for the authorities to tackle the wealth disparities. And since the subsistence and basic public services are guaranteed for those on low incomes, the authorities have a comparatively broad space in which to tilt more social resources to the disadvantaged groups while sustaining the expansion of the middle-income group.
Although the executive capabilities of the Chinese authorities are not in doubt, and much has been done to pave the way for the solution of the wealth gap problem, the central authorities still stressed how complex and arduous the task is, and the long time it will take, showing the scale of the challenge.
While paying special attention to maintaining social stability, unity and harmony, the Chinese authorities will address this challenge in a step-by-step manner.
History indicates the common prosperity China pursues should by no means be understood as equalitarianism or robbing the rich to assist the poor, but a dynamic process, in which the policymakers should on the one hand use tax and other financial means to promote the fair distribution of national wealth, and on the other modernize the institutional framework of the country to ensure the channels and opportunities for upward mobility in society are distributed more fairly.
This will ensure the rich will shoulder more responsibilities, the poor can access more chances to pursue better lives, and the middle-income group can feel their burdens eased.