Millennium Post

A million Chinese couples apply for second child

A million Chinese couples apply for second child
The relaxation came as the world’s second largest economy strives to address its declining labour force and ageing population.

China’s current population of 1.3 billion would see a rise with the realxation in this three decade old family planning policy. “The number of applications is in line with the estimate of less than two million annually by China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC),” Mao Qunan,
spokesman with the commission said on Monday.

“The commission will put more effort toward improving the population monitoring mechanism and will stipulate relevant policies,” he said. Since China’s one-child policy was eased in a pilot programme in east China’s Zhejiang Province in January 2014, couples nationwide may now have a second child if either parent is an only child.

“We will also collect public opinion on health care for pregnant women and children in a timely manner,” Mao was quoted by the state-run Xinhua news agency.

The concession to have second child evoked poor response with fewer couples opting to exercise the option due to spiralling cost of rising children, media reports said. Although 11 million couples have been granted a permit to have a second child since the country relaxed its family planning policy at the end of 2013 only seven lakhs of them have filed birth applications, according to the latest NHFPC statistics.


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