The story appears on

Page A3

October 31, 2011

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Education

One-child policy to stay, population official says

CHINA will adhere to its one-child policy to maintain a low reproduction rate, the country's family planning chief said yesterday, the eve of the day the world's population was expected to reach 7 billion.

"Overpopulation remains one of the major challenges to social and economic development," said Li Bin, director of the State Population and Family Planning Commission, adding that the population of China is expected to hit 1.45 billion in 2020.

Li said maintaining and improving the existing policy and keeping a low reproduction rate, along with addressing the issues of gender imbalance and an aging population, are the major tasks going forward.

The United Nations estimates the world's population will reach seven billion today.

Zhai Zhenwu, a leading Chinese demographer, said last week that China's family planning policy had postponed this day for at least five years, as it prevented 360 million people from being added to the country's population, now put at 1.34 billion.

"The population of China would have hit 1.7 billion had it not been for the family planning policy," said Li.

The most populous nation in the world, China introduced its family-planning policy, often referred to as the "one-child policy," in 1979 to curb pressure on the environment and resources.

Li said the policy has created a favorable environment for the country's economic development and social stability by alleviating demand for education, employment and housing. Thanks to the policy, China's average education term has reached nine years and its population's life expectancy 73.5 years. In addition, maternal mortality rates and infant mortality rates are among the lowest of developing countries.

China is focusing more on the all-round development and the livelihood of its people, said Li.

"The Chinese government seriously fulfills the World Population Plan of Action and the Millennium Development Goals set by the United Nations, making positive contributions to the world's population development," said Li.

However, Li said that China is still facing other population-related challenges, including gender imbalance and an aging populace.

For every 100 girls born in 2010, 118 boys were born, Li said.

And 13.26 percent of China's population are aged 60 or above. The percentage is expected to hit one third, or 440 million people, by 2050. One fifth of the population will be 80 years of age or older in 2050, according to Li.

Although the average years of education for people has been extended, the rate of higher-educated people in the main labor force stands at only 12 percent, lagging far behind levels in developed countries.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend