For the first time in 70 years, there were fewer Chinese people last year than the year before.
The world’s most populous nation, with nearly 1.4 billion people, has, since 2016, allowed couples to have two children hoping to turn a flat trend after several years of a one-child policy. So far, the desired effect has failed.
The official figures from the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics are expected to come later in January, but a thorough work done by
US-based researcher, Yi Fuxian, concludes that China’s population fell by 1.3 million during 2018.
It is the first time in 70 years that there have been fewer Chinese in the course of a year.
And the prospects for the future are gloomy.
The number of fertile women is expected to fall by 39% over the next ten years. The proportion of elderly people grows strongly, while the workforce shrinks.
Yi, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin, has been critical of China’s one-child policy for several years. Now he believes Chinese
authorities have to move away from the limitation of two children for each couple and, in addition, launch generous welfare schemes such as maternity leave and tax relief for young parents.
The alternative is reduced economic growth in China, with catastrophic consequences for the entire world’s economy, Yi believes.
© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today