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In depth: a remote Chinese region's fragile victory over poverty

Beijing's effort includes urbanization and generous subsidies for poorer areas

In Liangshan’s Sanhe village, where President Xi Jinping visited in 2018, almost every family lives in rammed-earth houses. (Photo by Caixin) 

High in the mountainous southern extremity of Sichuan province, China, a group of young adults gathered to chat and play cards outside at noon on a weekday. The smartphone-wielding, Pepsi-drinking youths were accompanied by a chicken and a cow.

Dramatic changes have occurred in the Liangshan Yi autonomous prefecture in recent years, as Beijing's ambitious campaign to end absolute poverty by the end of this year has led to greater urbanization and generous subsidies being handed out to those deemed deserving. But some have asked what will happen when the campaign ends and warned that the economic transformation has not been built on solid foundations.

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