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June 15, 2011

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One-child reward now 30 yuan

SHANGHAI has raised the financial rewards paid to registered residents who have only one child.

The monthly reward hadn't changed for 30 years, making the city's payment, after other provinces began to raise their contribution, the lowest in the nation.

Under an amended rule published on the government's website yesterday but which took effect on January 1, the monthly reward for each eligible parent increases from 2.5 yuan to 30 yuan (US$4.6) until the child is 16.

Officials from the Shanghai Population and Family Planning Commission said the increase was a measure to encourage local residents to stick to the country's one-child policy introduced in 1979.

Shanghai has applied to the central government to allow more couples to give birth to a second child to ease the city's unbalanced population due to the increasing number of old people and the low birth rate.

However, there has been no indication so far that the city will be allowed to loosen the policy.

Currently, couples can have a second child under certain conditions, such as both spouses being from one-child families or a couple's first child suffering from a non-hereditary disease.

But population experts say the higher payment will not be enough to dissuade people from having a second child.

"There is no big difference between 2.5 yuan and 30 yuan compared to the current cost of living," said Wang Guixin from Fudan University's Institute of Population Research.

Also under the amended rule, a one-off payment given to a one-child parent paying social insurance when he or she retires rises from 2,300 yuan to 5,000 yuan.

The reward for those who haven't paid social insurance also rises 1,000 yuan to 5,000 yuan when a woman is 55 or a man is 60.

A bonus to residents who got married before April 15, 2004, and have no children also rises to 10,000 yuan when he or she retires.

Previously, it was 4,600 yuan for those with social insurance and no less than 2,000 yuan without social insurance.

The amended rule will be valid for five years, the city government said.


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