Beginning Friday, Jan 1st, 2016 people in China are allowing ‘two child’ law in their family as the new couples support law goes into effect. China’s ‘two child’ law ends the world’s most populated country’s questionable one-child policy. This comes amidst continuing concerns over an ageing population and less workforce. Still, experts say the change is likely too little, too late to address China’s growing population crisis.
The new ‘two child’ law, which was declaring by the ruling Communist Party in October. Then adopted by the national legislature in December, officially allows families to have two children as ofJanuary 1, 2016.
“It is worth mentioning how people’s lives will be changed,” the state-run Xinhua News Agency said in its recent report.
The ‘one child’ policy has been in place since 1978 and restricted most couples to having only a single child. Additionally, violators faced fines and even forced abortions for attempting to have a second child.
The old law was preventing over 400 million births; This measure limited the population to over 1.357 billion; according to the most recent census held in 2013.
The three-decade-old policy was originating as a demographic crisis developed with a noticeable rise in population of older adults and a shrinking workforce. China represents the world’s second-largest economy.
According to latest stats, the number of citizens aged 60 or over in China was nearly 212 million at the end of 2014, representing 15% of the country’s entire population. When the law was enacting and the number of elderly citizens had been approaching the significant 40 million mark.
The reason for the change to a ‘two child’ law has been said to be fully demographic: “to balance population growth and address the challenge of an ageing population.” The change is a tacit admission that the ‘one child’ policy will create an economic and demographic disaster. The law was initially changing for economic reasons. It is ironic that it has resulted in a China with a looming economic crisis.
For its citizen parents, it brought severe emotional anxiety and led to sex-selective abortions in the male-dominated society.
The United Nations has prognosticated that people over age 65 will make up 18 percent of China’s total by 2030. That will represent a doubling of the stats from 2011. This will create a daunting labour crisis and shortage for its workforce.
When 2050 arrives, China is going to have approximately 500 million people over the age of 60. This will surpass the total population of the United States.
Furthermore, recent official surveys revealing that despite significant promotion of the ‘two child’ law, it’s not being met with the enthusiasm they had hoped. Among the 100 million families who are eligible to have a second child. There is a lack of interest due to the substantial costs involved in giving birth to another baby.
The ‘two child’ law will also be enforcing it the same strictness as its predecessor; forced abortions or forced sterilisations.
During a November briefing, officials from the National Health and Family Planning Commission estimated that under the new law. Almost three million additional children will be born each year over the next five years.
Chinese officials also doing this will result in a total of about 30 million people together to the labour force by 2050.