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China Ends One-child policy

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Source: The Standard

Images: On.cc/Appledaily

Youtube: Appledaily

 

 

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Beijing has ended its controversial one- child policy after decades of strict enforcement left it with an aging population and shrinking workforce, heightening the challenges of slowing growth.

All couples will be allowed two children, Xinhua News Agency reported, citing a communique by the Communist Party following a four-day meeting in the capital. The historic change is "intended to balance population development and address the challenge of an aging population." Campaigners welcome the move, but stress that a two-child policy still means China will retain population-control mechanisms. Demographic changes will take decades to have an effect and previous loosenings have led to fewer extra births than expected.

 

The policy, instituted in the late 1970s, restricted most couples to only a single offspring and for years authorities argued that it was a key contributor to the economic boom. It was enforced by a commission that ordered fines for violators and often forced abortions, leading to heart-rending tales of loss for would-be parents. But the world's largest population at 1.37 billion is now aging, gender imbalances are severe - baby boys are preferred to girls - and its workforce is shrinking. The concerns led to limited reforms in 2013, including allowing a second child for some couples in urban areas, but few have taken the opportunity.

 

Human rights organizations welcome the change to the deeply unpopular policy, but express reservations about remaining controls. It is "good news for the couples who wish to have a second child," Maya Wang of Human Rights Watch said, but "the restrictions on reproduction rights remain in China. "As long as the quotas and system of surveillance remains, women still do not enjoy reproductive rights."

 

The change in policy is primarily for economic reasons. Amnesty International's William Nee said on Twitter: "Two-child policy won't end forced sterilizations, forced abortions, government control over birth permits."

 

Yong Cai, a sociology professor at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and expert on the one-child policy, said the change is "at least 10 years later than it should be. But better than never." Social media met the announcement with a collective shrug. As the country has grown wealthier, couples have increasingly delayed having even one child as they devote more time to other goals, such as building their careers.

 

Many netizens said a second child will only add to the intense social and financial pressures attached to reproduction. "I will have four parents to take care of, along with two children," one noted. "This is too great a responsibility."

 

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Should have done it sooner.. younger generation now are not having any kids till they are older and most are not interested in having more then 1 child as children can be expensive.

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This is good news although coming slightly late but saving a lot of future lives.

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They follow acknowledge that the population is aging and that there is a gender imbalance. They should have done it a long time ago . China is going to feel the pain when a majority of the workforce retires.

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It'll be interesting to see how this plays out in the future. With China's economic growth slowing down, an aging work force, and a huge gender disparity, I wonder if lifting the ban will be enough to sustain its economy in the future. Will China be adopting policies to support women too? Cause from Japan's example, even if they are encouraged and "allowed" to have more children, lack of financial incentive will deter most families from wanting to have more children.

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they are now on the similar wagon of other population crisis countries

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I feel sorry for some third world countries whose children grow up in an environment of poverty and despair.

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At least China has practise population control to try and save the planet. The average number of children in a family in Australia is 2.3. It shows in Australia even in a wealthy country, people may not want to have that many babies.

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That is a good news. The one child policy has already made 1.5 generation don't have cousin.

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Sounds cruel with the one child policy but the population would have been out of control. There will be 2nd/3rd generation billionaires who couldn't care less about the economy or care to improve it. A waste of sperm to bet fair. This is when the 2 child policy is in place.

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honestly, for a country with a population of 1.3 billion people.....and with MANY MANY MANY living in poverty....do they seriously need more population?

China is the perfect example of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer....but hey, lets pump out more kids.

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it is a good thing that china have ended the one child policy since some people want to have more than one child in their family.

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That was an improvement and I guess a welcomed balance between population control and to address the concerns about aging population and imbalance of gender. It'll definitely take a while to see any change or improvement.

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