Impoverished southern Xinjiang residents relocated to boost stability

By Zhao Yusha Source:Global Times Published: 2018/1/30 22:28:41

Thousands of residents of southern Xinjiang Autonomous Region in Northwest China have been relocated to work in other regions of China in what Chinese experts characterized as a bid to improve social stability and alleviate nationwide poverty.

Local governments moved 2,410 people from four prefectures in southern Xinjiang to find jobs elsewhere, Xinjiang Daily reported on Monday.

Some 1,300 were moved to other provinces and municipalities, 610 stayed in Xinjiang and another 500 were assigned work nearby, the paper reported.

Poverty alleviation in Xinjiang is more difficult compared to other places as not only are some places extremely poor but there are "ethnic issues involved," Yu Shaoxiang, an expert on social security and poverty relief legislation at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times.

Compared with other parts of China, Yu noted, the education level of southern Xinjiang residents was relatively low and few destitute residents in Xinjiang could mobilize themselves so easily as to find jobs in other Chinese cities.

Organizing people to work away from home would help them better integrate with the rest of China and they could take their advanced skills back to Xinjiang later, Yu said. The relocation also helped maintain security in the region, he said.

Most of the poverty-stricken counties of southern Xinjiang suffer from a poor living environment, insufficient infrastructure and a lack of public services, the Xinhua News Agency reported. The area has been prone to acts of terrorism.

In 2017, Xinjiang raised 4.17 billion yuan ($627 million) in 2017 for relocation funds as part of its poverty reduction drive and the money helped relocate people from poverty-hit regions to more developed areas, Xinhua said.

This year, Xinjiang's regional human resources and social security department said that it would organize skill training programs to help 40,000 laborers from impoverished counties get jobs in 2018, Xinhua said.


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