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9th ASEAN-China Forum discusses poverty reduction

by VTV430 July 2015 Last updated at 07:00 AM

Homeless family live under a bridge in Manila.
Homeless family live under a bridge in Manila.

VTV.vn - The 9th ASEAN-China Forum on Social Development and Poverty Reduction kicked off Tuesday, 29, July, in Vientiane, Laos.

The 3-day event an opportunity for regional countries to share theirexperiences in poverty eradication. The common goal of the countries is for every person in ASEANto enjoy the benefits of economic development in the region post 2015 – after the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community.

 According to the ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN member countries have achieved positive results in their poverty reduction efforts. In the 1990s, half of the ASEAN population lived under the poverty line, with daily spending of 1 USD. The poverty rate has now been reduced to 1/8, butpoverty reduction is still a priority for ASEAN.

Government officials, scholars, delegates from international organizations, enterprises and the media were engaged in discussions on the theme Financial Innovations for Poverty Reduction. The discussions pointed out that ASEAN countries should provide their residents with access to microfinance, which has proven effective since the 1980s.

Bounheuang Douangphachanh, President, Laos National Leading Committee for Rural Development and Poverty Eradication said: “The Laos government has recognized the important role of microfinance and has encouraged the use of microfinance, as well as assisting small & medium enterprises in rural areas. Thanks to these measures, the poverty rate in Laos fell from 27.6% in 2008 to 23.2% in 2013.”

Poverty eradication and reducing the wealth gap between countries is one of the issues mentioned in ASEAN charter. In order to achieve this goal, cooperation and exchanges among member countries and the international community is essential. The experiences shared at the forum will help countries find solutions to reduce poverty ahead of ASEAN integration.

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