While China’s been well-known for its one-child policy, it seems to be changing its tune as of late. Faced with decreased birth rates and an aging population, it is now encouraging families to have more than one child.
CNN reported that a full-page article published in China’s People’s Daily was ran recently warning that decreased birth rates on society and the economy is beginning to show. The column received a tremendous amount of attention, including millions of online comments, and also included a new official postage stamp for China, with the image embracing the Year of The Pig, with a pig family that had a mom, dad, and three piglets. Last year’s stamp, a reflection of the Year of the Monkey, showed a parental unit monkey being kissed by two kid-like monkeys; once again a hint that childbirth restrictions within the nation had been eased.
China’s working pool is diminishing, with many young individuals supporting both parents, along with two sets of grandparents, and the nation is still seeing a lack of social service support for seniors. Just last year, China’s fertility rate was at 1.6 per adult female; a number that is quite below the estimated rate of 2.1, which is needed to keep the country at a steady population.
While the one-child policy has been reversed, it has not effectively addressed the issue. China’s urban middle class seems to enjoy the idea of a one-child family, as the cost of having kids is increasing, especially in cities.
And family planning is not the only thing that China is working on, they are also focused on keeping said families ‘together’. A top court in China last month has started thinking about a ‘calm down’ time period for those divorcing to give them a chance to rethink the entire thing. Governments are also providing cash subsidies to couples who want to tie the knot.
Still, many can’t help but be concerned over the idea of more kids and how this may negatively impact the females of the country. As it is, women face a hard time in China when it comes to applying for jobs, even though the country has regulations and labor laws that prohibit gender discrimination. In fact, a survey was conducted in 2017 by 51job.com, a job search site, where it was revealed that 75 percent of companies were reluctant to hire females thanks to the more relaxed ideal China had around family planning now.