Radio Free China

Human Rights and Religious Freedom News

Chinese City Encourages Two Children Families to Avert Demographic Disaster

Posted by radiofreechina on July 11, 2007

By John Jalsevac

GUANGZHOU, China, July 11, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Despite a strictly enforced national one-child policy, a city in southern China has developed its own policy encouraging families to have more than one child, The China Daily reported earlier this week.

According to The China Daily the city of Guangzhou is heading towards a demographic and economic disaster, which the new policy is intended to avert. By the year 2010, reports the paper, Guangzhou will have over a million residents who are older than 60, but the city estimates that they will only be able to accommodate 40,000 in homes for the aged. In addition, a sparse generation of young workers will be forced to keep China’s social programs going, and economically support a rapidly aging population.

“If the ageing of the population continues, this will have a certain effect on social and economic development, and on employment and social security,” said Xinhua news agency.

The spokesman for the China National Family Planning Commission, Yu Xuejun, indicated that China has just begun to feel the effects of an aging population, and said that it is appropriate for some of the larger cities to encourage their residents to have more than one child. “Guangzhou, Beijing, and Shanghai…These places, (if) they encourage only child couples to have children, I think it does not violate the policy or the law because they are still following family planning policy in having children,” said Xuejun, according to VOA news.

Xuejun also indicated that the restrictions of the one-child policy have exacerbated the problem of the population imbalance, and admitted that loosening the restrictions would “partially” solve the problem. and that work must be done to ensure that social services in the countryside are equipped to take care of the aged. “The social security is still not fair because now its main coverage is in the cities,” he said.

Western population and economic experts have been encouraging China for years to ease up on their forced one-child policy, which, besides violating numerous international human rights agreements, is leading the country towards inevitable economic disaster. A WorldNetDaily report from 2004 detailed the demographic crisis that China was inflicting upon itself through its disastrous policy.

A recent report by Stratfor, a private global intelligence firm, calls attention to the precarious economic position that China is presently in as a consequence of its demographic crisis. “If China is to prevent the current labor shortages from becoming a long-term phenomenon, it needs to refine its family planning policy and not rely on unpredictable–and socially destabilizing–outflows of migrant labor,” reads Stratfor’s report (http://www.stratfor.com/products/premium/read_article.php?id=291901).

“The most promising solution to this dilemma is to find ways of boosting the fertility rate of the nation as a whole by encouraging women to have more children.”

In addition, the one-child policy has led to a dramatic imbalance in the numbers of men and women in China, with many couples selectively aborting female children in favor of males.

Despite the new decision by Guangzhou to encourage two-children families, in many parts of China, especially the rural areas, the one-child policy is brutally enforced. In May of this year a campaign began in the province of Guangxi, during which many women were forced to abort children, and others were punished with heavy fines for violating the one-child policy. In a number of parts of China, riots broke out in protest against the campaign. Those living in rural areas have also been disgruntled by the unequal enforcement of the one-child policy between the rural areas and the city, with the larger cities being much less strict in its enforcement than other parts of the country.

See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

China’s One-Child Policy to Cripple Chinese Economy
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2004/feb/04021806.html

China’s One-Child Terror Campaign Continues
http://www.lifesite.net/ldn/2007/jul/07071008.html

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