BEIJING, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- China's regional ethnic autonomy system not only safeguards national unity, ethnic solidarity, and social stability, but also promotes the development of ethnic minorities and the long-term stability of the country, a Chinese official said Saturday.
Xu Yousheng, deputy head of the United Front Work Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the remarks at a press conference in Beijing.
The total regional gross domestic product (GDP) in China's five autonomous regions -- Inner Mongolia, Guangxi, Tibet, Ningxia and Xinjiang -- and three provinces with a large multi-ethnic population -- Guizhou, Yunnan and Qinghai increased from 5.1 trillion yuan (about 800 billion U.S. dollars) to 10.4 trillion yuan from 2012 to 2020, according to Xu.
The per capita GDP increased from 27,000 yuan to 52,000 yuan from 2012 to 2020 in these regions and the urbanization rate grew from 43.1 percent to 55.1 percent, Xu said.
The official also noted that all the 31.21 million poor people in areas with large ethnic minority populations were lifted out of poverty, and all the 420 state-level poverty-stricken counties in areas of ethnic autonomy got rid of poverty.
The development of ethnic minority areas and improved living standards of people from all ethnic groups are the best proof of the effectiveness of the regional ethnic autonomy system, Xu said. Enditem