India Seeks to Regulate Booming “Rent-a-Womb” Industry

India legalized commercial surrogacy in 2002 and is one of the few countries where women can be paid for carrying another’s child. Women’s rights groups criticize the $400 million industry for exploiting poor women and endangering their health to produce babies for rich clients, mostly from other nations: “The low-cost technology, skilled doctors, scant bureaucracy and a plentiful supply of surrogates have made India a preferred destination for fertility tourism, attracting nationals from Britain, the United States, Australia and Japan, to name a few,” reports Reuters. A government-funded survey found that the surrogate mothers are not assured a standard rate of compensation or post-delivery health insurance. Proposed legislation would restrict surrogacy to women aged 21 to 35, with insurance, and a notarized contract with the commissioning parents. Critics suggest that too much regulation may hurt both prospective parents and also surrogates who earn a living through the industry. India now prohibits surrogacy for foreign same-sex couples and individuals. – YaleGlobal

India Seeks to Regulate Booming “Rent-a-Womb” Industry

India cracks down on surrogacy industry to prevent exploitation of poor
Nita Bhalla, Mansi Thapliyal
Wednesday, October 2, 2013
© Thomson Reuters 2013

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