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August 14, 23

NEWS / Statistics show alarming decline in marriage and birth certificates in China

A recent statistical report for 2022 shows that fewer and fewer Chinese citizens are getting married and having children. A mere 6.83 million marriage certificates were issued in 2022, down from 7.63 million in 2021 and 13 million in 2013. This decline is correlated with declining birth rates.

There are several factors attributed to the declining marriage and birth rates. Among these are a 20 percent youth unemployment rate and economic instability. The birth rate is currently estimated to be an average of 1.28 children, lower than the US rate of 1.6 and the replacement rate of 2.1. Having a birth rate below the replacement figure precipitates population decline, but this can be offset with immigration. Unlike the United States and Europe, however, immigration to China has been lackluster.

The population shrank by 850,000 last year, and United Nations projections suggest that China’s population will drop from the current figure of about 1.4 billion to about 1.3 billion by 2050. The Brookings Institute further predicts that the country’s population will drop to 800 million by 2100. China’s population used to be largest in the world but is believed to have been surpassed by that of India this year.

The drop in population is predicted to have serious economic ramification as it can hamper the growth of companies that rely on the continuous expansion of their consumer base. The workforce is also expected to shrink, which could negatively affect production quality and quantity.

Fearful of overpopulation, China adopted a one-child policy under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping in 1979. The policy reduced population growth, but also resulted in a demographic and gender imbalance, with a growing aging population and up to 116 males for every 100 females due to selective abortions. China under Xi Jinping has moved away from the one-child policy, allowing families to have 2 children in 2015 and 3 children 2021.



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