China’s Population To Start Declining Soon, Reports Say

China's Population To Start Declining Soon, Reports Say

Population CRISIS? – A Startling Prediction

( – For decades, the Chinese government has tried to control its population through various legislation. However, it seems the heavy-handed approach is coming back new consequences. Statistics indicate the beginning of a severe decline could spell trouble in the coming years.

Statistics Tell a Scary Story

The Chinese Statistical Yearbook for 2021 (CSY-2021) reflects the nation’s rural populace is shrinking. In 2021, it was at 509 million. The birthrate had fallen to under 1% in 2020, a 40-year low.

Most alarming was the increasing disparity between the number of men and women. In 2021, the breakdown was 264 million men to 245 million women. In some areas, the numbers were even worse. In rural areas, where boys are more valuable to farming families, there were 107.91 males for every 100 females.

Cities were also seeing far worse issues than rural regions. Beijing had 130.93 men for every 100 women, and Shanghai had 120.21 males for every 100 females.

This imbalance is discouraging for a country trying to rebound from a rapidly dropping population. Still, larger issues loom. People reportedly don’t want to have more children. Plus, the demographic is swinging predominantly toward more older adults.

Government Manipulation

The problem began with the one-child policy. The law targeted slowing explosive growth, and the government enacted the law in 1979. The government warned that too many people would lead to food crises and harm the country. The rules limited families to only one child.

Officials would persecute those having more than one baby, which led to people either having late-term abortions when they were having girls or abandoning them so they could try for a boy. Some people killed newborn girls.

Sometimes, people hid their daughters away from society. While they didn’t fall victim to abortions or murder, these girls grew up without exposure to the world or proper education. For all legal purposes, these children don’t exist.

These horrors happened because families saw boys as more valuable, especially in rural areas. They needed them to help on the farms and with labor needs. Additionally, people wanted sons to carry on the family name.

The government also reportedly required mandatory sterilization once women had a child.

Chinese leaders announced they would end the one-child policy in 2016 and implement the two-child policy. They cited concerns about low population growth. According to The BMJ, a study showed the change led to 5.4 million additional births, yet the total number of births was far below officials’ target number.

In 2021, the government implemented the three-child policy to encourage people to have more children and increase the population. But data shows the approach hasn’t worked. Chinese official Yang Wenzhuang reportedly said the country’s population is expected to start going down by 2025.

No More Children

A Xinhua poll asked if people would take advantage of the new three-child allowance. Of the 22,000 respondents, 20,000 said they would not consider having three children.

The problem seems to be a lack of community family support, especially for mothers. According to China’s New York Times publication, women say pregnancy discrimination is rampant within the workplace. Those who have built careers don’t want to risk their livelihoods to have another child. New government policies should offer assistance, but they’re often either improperly implemented or ignored.

The expense of additional children is another consideration. The report points out that many said they are struggling financially now, so having another child wouldn’t make sense.

Then there is the next generation’s lack of interest in starting families. Many younger adults don’t want kids, or, if they do, they want a small family because it makes more financial sense.

China’s approach to controlling its population has never worked as leaders had hoped. Yet, it seems that instead of tackling issues and trying to help make having children more accessible, they have been trying to legislate themselves back to a place where they have a thriving, diverse demographic.

Do you think China should be encouraging more people to have children? If so, how should they go about it?

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