4 July, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 01/24/2007
CHINA
China’s one child policy won’t change despite causing skewed male/female ratio
Official data are in and point to the policy’s failure. Only one Chinese in three respects it, and the rich can always “buy” the right to have more children. Government will keep restrictions in place till 2010 but says it might drop them later.

Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – China's birth-control policy has aggravated the country's gender imbalance, but it will not change in coming years, National Population and Family Planning Commission (NPFPC) director Zhang Weiqing said. Whilst acknowledging that the situation is serious and that the one-child policy made matters worse, he denied it was only the cause. Instead, the skewed sex ratio is also the consequence of the ingrained tradition of favouring boys over girls and the abuse of ultrasound scanning technology.

Whatever the cause the mainland will have 40 million more men of marriageable age than women by 2020, a recent government report estimated.

In 2005, 117 boys were born for every 100 girls, but in some regions the ratio was 130/100, compared with the average for industrialised countries of 104-107/100.

The gender disparity came about after the mainland introduced the one-child policy in 1979.

Yet, as Mr Zhang points out, China's family planning was not truly a "one-child" policy because that requirement only applied to 35.9 per cent of the mainland's population. He said 52.9 per cent of the population was allowed to give birth to a second child if their first was a girl and another 9.6 per cent were poor farmers who were permitted to have two children. Ethnic minorities who represent about 1.6 per cent of the population were allowed to have at least two children.

For many Chinese the unfairness of the policy becomes even more blatant when considering that the fact that the wealthy can "buy" a second child by simply paying a 50,000 yuan fine (US$ 6,200) for breaking the one-child-only rule. And this, Beijing is aware, is fuelling social tensions.

Despite everything, Mr Zhang said Beijing would "unswervingly" continue enforcing its birth-control restrictions because of a baby boom in the 1980s. These measures would continue through to 2010 when the population was expected to reach 1.36 billion. He said the 100 million or so only children born since the 1970s had reached marriageable age and relaxing the rule would result in another wave of births. "It will be very risky if we allow a second child now," he explained.

Although 60 million more people are expected than the landmark 1.3 billion reached two years ago, China’s population is already ageing and this foreshadows future labour shortages.

A survey by the Communist Party’s China Youth Daily, whose results were released on Monday, found that 68 per cent of respondents thought it was unfair that wealthy people could essentially afford to have more babies.

The government realises that its policy has failed but is unwilling to admit it.

Zhang suggests that fines for a second child might be reduced for poorer families because “the rich and the poor are equal before the law”.

Beijing also wants to prevent women from the mainland to go Hong Kong to give birth, which is another way to bypass the one-child policy.

This has become a serious headache for Hong Kong health authorities because of the size of influx and because too often these women end up delivering in the emergency ward.

For this reason, the Hong Kong government has barred women who are beyond 28 weeks of pregnancy from entering without pre-booked obstetric services. Similarly, NPFPC deputy director Wang Guoqiang said the mainland would try to complement efforts taken by Hong Kong.

Analysts note however that whilst pregnant mainlanders might cause problems to Hong Kong, they have no impact on China’s population control policies. Last year 12,072 non-local women gave birth, compared to 28,414 Hong Kong residents.  (PB)


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
03/03/2008 CHINA
Beijing between admissions and denials on its one-child policy
04/24/2006 CHINA
Beijing "will not change family planning policy"
05/25/2007 CHINA
Growing unrest shows one-child policy in tatters
03/17/2005 PHILIPPINES
Catholics pray against violence and abortion
03/30/2007 CHINA
Party officials’ careers in jeopardy if they have more than one child

Editor's choices
ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST
Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community
by Bernardo CervelleraThe influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
TUNISIA - ISLAM
Tunis, stop terrorism by closing fundamentalist mosquesPresident Essebsi believes unified and global strategy needed to counter terrorism. The attack in Sousse almost simultaneous with those in France, Kuwait, Somalia. Islamic State claims responsibility.
VATICAN – ITALY
Pope in Turin tells young people to be chaste in love, go against the flow and not retire at 20In his last meeting on the first day of his visit to Turin, Francis met young people in Vittorio Square. In a Question and Answer exchange, he talked about love, friendship and loss of trust towards life. "I understand you. How many hypocrites speak of peace and sell weapons. How can one trust? By following Christ, whose act of extreme love, i.e. the Cross, saved humanity." The pontiff also looked at the horrors of the 20th century as evidence of the loss of trust towards world powers. He urged young people “not to retire at 20,” but “live, don’t just exist.”

Dossier

Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.