Two women sitting together on chairs



Over the past 40 years, China has seen tremendous economic growth, and with it, the development of large urban centres, industries and infrastructure. China was the first country, in terms of human development, to move from the category of low human development to high human development. In 2020, China announced the milestone of eradicating extreme rural poverty. Yet despite these successes, challenges remain, particularly in the disparity between urban and rural development, as well as inequalities amongst the population. 

UNDP works to assist the government in ensuring that the benefits of China’s rapid advances in so many areas are enjoyed by all. UNDP’s approach emphasises integrating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into all levels of development planning, local SDG capacity-building and implementation. 

UNDP facilitates China’s shift to using the SDGs as a standard for its inclusive development, economic decisions and investments. By developing and applying standards and measurement frameworks to influence public and private decisions, we strive to improve living conditions and economic opportunities, change citizen behaviour and ensure no one is left behind. 

Private and public sustainable investments are an essential element of implementing the SDGs. UNDP is working towards channeling private capital towards SDG-aligned investment opportunities and developing tools and standards to measure the SDG impact of private investments. 

UNDP firmly believes that the private sector is an indispensable partner in pursuing the SDGs. We are working to incentivise the transformation towards responsible, sustainable and low-carbon businesses. 

In Depth 

UNDP provides integrated development solutions to understand and address multidimensional poverty, including interventions targeting groups at risk of sliding back into poverty and expanding poverty measures beyond monetary thresholds. This involves concretising green development concepts and introducing green technologies into the Government’s rural revitalisation campaign, while supporting the innovative development of rural cooperatives and improving basic social security and services. 

The focus is on strengthening resilience to climate change, natural disasters and public health emergencies such as COVID-19, by developing early warning, response and recovery capacities, which reduce the risk of anyone returning to poverty. 

UNDP is building capacities and piloting transformative schemes to contribute to coordinated development between different geographical, rural and urban areas. We focus on women and youth in underdeveloped locations, building skills and pilot projects in communities to develop gender-responsive, sustainable livelihood systems that address workplace gender gaps, the issue of unpaid care work and the digital divide.  

UNDP’s work targets groups most at risk of being left behind: all vulnerable groups in underdeveloped regions; persons with disabilities; the elderly; smallholder farmers; youth, especially those not in education, employment or training; people living with HIV; and women, many of whom face biases, despite gender-neutral legislation. There are multiple overlaps between these groups with their vulnerabilities being further exacerbated by climate change, environmental degradation and medical shocks. 

UNDP works with government counterparts, United Nations agencies, and when appropriate, the private sector and the general public, towards an enabling environment for vulnerable groups to be included in the country’s sustainable development, by reducing stigma and discrimination. This includes advocacy, awareness-raising and community-based pilots. 

To facilitate the above interventions and leave no one behind, UNDP supports introducing, designing and implementing SDG-centred planning and financing policies. To harness public and private financing, UNDP leverages its financing platform for the SDGs and promotes digital and innovative financing solutions involving multilateral development banks, the People’s Bank of China, the private sector, other UN agencies, and academia.