HCM City adopts poverty-reduction plan hinh anh 1A street fruit juice stall under the overpass on East-West Boulevard in HCM City. (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – HCM City will carry out a sustainable poverty-reduction programme for the 2016-2020 period to help the poor access basic social services such as education and health, and social welfare, according to the city's Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.

To identify poor and near-poor households, the programme will use as criteria income, education and training, healthcare, employment and social insurance, living conditions and access to information, said Nguyen Van Xe, deputy director of the department.

In previous years, poverty reduction programmes used a list of poor households which were selected based on income to provide an equal package of support, Xe said.

Some groups of population with an income over the poverty line still face lack of access to basic social services, he added.

Under the new standards, poor households are those with income of below 21 million VND (930 USD) per person per year.

Households classified as poor because of a lack of sufficient healthcare are defined as those without health insurance cards.

Those who have no access to clean water and live in poor housing are defined as those with poor housing conditions.

Under the new criteria, the programme will benefit around 130,000 poor families and 80,000 near-poor families in the city.

The United Nations Development Programme has worked with Hanoi and HCM City on the project, titled "Support to Multi-dimensional Poverty Reduction in Urban Areas" for the 2012-2016 period.

The project builds capacity in the development and implementation of policies to reduce urban poverty multi-dimensionally.

HCM City piloted adopting a multi-dimensional poverty approach for its poverty reduction programme from 2016 to 2020.

Between 2009 and 2015, the city spent a total of 4.25 trillion VND (188.9 million USD) on poverty reduction, bringing the rate of poor households with annual income of below 16 million VND (710 USD) per person to 0.89 percent.-VNA