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China’s Poverty Alleviation Success Holds Lessons for Nigeria

In a recent interview with Xinhua News Agency, Garba Shehu, a senior spokesman for Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, said that the government has demonstrated keen interest in studying China’s development model, which has transformed the Asian country into a global economic powerhouse. He said Nigeria recognizes the potential of adopting an approach similar to that of China.

Considering that the two countries have maintained a durable partnership over five decades, with thriving bilateral cooperation including trade and investment – as both countries prioritize development – it should not be out of the blue that Nigeria is ready to emulate the Asian giant’s rapid development, which has improved lives in China and the rest of the world.

As a proud member of the global community, China has indicated its readiness to share the country’s development experience with the rest of the world. Faced with similar formidable challenges China had experienced in the past, Nigeria could draw vital lessons from the Asian country’s economic rise, which will certainly be an invaluable addition to efforts dedicated to foster development in Africa’s biggest economy.

For example, in poverty alleviation, a daunting task, China’s experience of lifting about 800 million people from poverty within four decades, the first in human history, presents important lessons to Nigeria, which is home to the largest population on the African continent.

With a population of more than 213 million, about 88.4 million people in Nigeria lived in extreme poverty in 2022 – accounting for 12.9 percent of the world’s entire population that lived in extreme poverty in that year. In fact, over the last 7 years, Nigeria has experienced a steady rise in its population that lives in extreme poverty.

Unfortunately, if the Nigerian government fails to take immediate and pertinent actions to effectively lift its people out of poverty, the situation could be worse in the coming years, particularly as the country’s bulging population projected by UN DESA-World Population Prospect could reach 264 million and 410 million in 2030 and 2050, respectively, which will present additional challenges.

To effectively tackle rising poverty in Nigeria, it is imperative for policymakers, the development community and all relevant stakeholders to take immediate, accelerated and concerted actions in a problem-solving process, drawing lessons from recent poverty eradication strategies that are inclusive and efficient. To achieve this goal, Nigeria could tap into China’s experience, which is as recent as 2020, to address various challenges that have impeded its poverty alleviation progress.

Source : China Daily