Fewer Chinese Than Expected Apply to Have Second Child

In September 1980, the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party issued a letter outlining the goal of keeping the nation’s population below 1.2 billion by the end of the century and “made an appeal” to promote a policy of each couple having one child. The policy reduced poverty and infant mortality, and the population was reported at 1.25 billion in 1999. But now the elderly represent a high proportion of the population, slowing down economic growth. The government has since eased the policy to allow couples, either of whom is an only child, to have two children. About 11 million families were eligible, but fewer than 1 million applied, reports the Financial Times. Raising a child is a costly two-decade commitment for parents. “The revised policy affects many parents in large urban centres, where the cost of bearing an extra child, in terms of both time and money, has become prohibitive,” writes Patti Waldmeir. “In 2012 the working-age population of China shrank for the first time, threatening a mainland economic miracle built upon a pool of surplus labour.” – YaleGlobal

Fewer Chinese Than Expected Apply to Have Second Child

Chinese do not rush to apply to bear second child, after an easing of restrictions; raising children is a costly two-decade commitment for parents
Patti Waldmeir
Friday, January 16, 2015
Additional reporting was provided by Zhang Yan.
Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2015.

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