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February 14, 2012

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Shanghai seen as most open to foreign marriage

SHANGHAI residents accept cross-border marriage more than any other place on the Chinese mainland, according to the latest survey on people's views on marriage.

Carried out by, one of the biggest matchmaking websites in the country, the survey questioned more than 3,100 people in the city, most of whom were born after 1980. Only 27 percent of the Shanghai inverviewees said they are pessimistic about cross-border marriage, much lower than the overall mainland percentage of 33 percent.

The website said Shanghai's culture, which is composed of both Chinese and Western culture, has made Shanghai residents more open to multinational marriage.

"Although the spouses share different cultural experiences, customs and languages, they can go on if they respect each other and be tolerant of each other," said Gong Haiyan, founder of the website. "Mutual understanding and the profound love between each other remain the vital conditions in cross-border marriages."

According to the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau, in the 1990s there was a cross-border marriage peak in Shanghai, and then the situation became stable. Last year, 2,225 cross-border marriages were registered in Shanghai, down a mere 0.5 percent from 2010. The marriages covered 70 countries and regions around the world.

Officials said that in the early 1990s, some people married foreigners only for a chance to pursue a more prosperous life, but now people lay more emphasis on their feelings.

The survey covered more than 85,000 people on the Chinese mainland. It revealed that about 15 percent of female respondents would not marry a man who does not own an apartment and a car.

It also showed that more than 80 percent of the Chinese people born after 1980 hold no discriminatory beliefs regarding homosexuality - 83 percent of respondents born between in the '80s as well as 82 percent of those born after 1990, are indifferent on sex orientation.

Meanwhile, Shanghai residents also accept marriage between generations more than people from other provinces and cities. The survey showed that only 32 percent of those questioned were against a "May-December romance."


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