Wednesday, August 02, 2006


Two Papers on Chinese Fertility

Not too long ago we had a discussion on Chinese fertility and as often before the discussion converged on just what theTFR level is in China as well as the effects of the one child policy. This entry fields two papers which might serve to illuminate these issues. Both papers are from recent issues of Population and Development Review.

The first paper examines the very important point of heterogenity across China in terms of application and effect of the one child policy.
continue reading

Fertility in China

Claus mailed me this morning with a link to this article from the BBC:

China's top family planning body has warned of a "population rebound" as couples flout one child policy rules. The widening wealth gap could lead to a rise in birth rates, Zhang Weiqing, from the National Population and Family Planning Commission, told state media. Newly rich couples can afford to pay fines to have more than one child, while rural couples are marrying earlier, he told Xinhua news agency.

As Claus indicated to me in his mail all of this is something of an oversimplification:
continue reading

China To Retain One Child Policy

This is not good news:

China has decided not to relax its one-child policy, although a top family planning official acknowledged Tuesday the policy has accelerated the nation's growing gender gap. ... Yet after a review last month, he said, the government decided to maintain the policy, which dates from the late 1970s, and limits urban couples to one child and rural families to two children. Dropping the restrictions now would risk a population surge as a baby boomer generation born in the early 1980s becomes ready to start families, he said.

Now let me be very clear at this point. China needs to introduce pro-natalist policies, and it needs to introduce them urgently. The discourse on sex-imbalances is important, but in this context it is an entirely secondary issue.
continue reading

China's demographic uncertainties

Claus' post on the consequences China's economic and demographic issues is important. If the demographic statistics reflect reality, then China is destined to face these problems in these acute forms. The problem, as Andy Mukherjee went on to write in an article published by Bloomberg on 16 February of this year, is that they may well not.

Wolfgang Lutz, who runs the population-research program at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria, is studying the range of uncertainty in China's future population trends. Lutz and his colleagues have identified at least 32 different estimates for the current fertility rate in Chinese women.
continue reading

The ageing of China and a methodological approach to countries' vulnerability to ageing

When we speak about China and demographics we often evoke the question of whether China will grow old before it grows rich. Many scholars and researchers have tried and are trying to answer this question and one of the more elaborate and interesting answers comes from The Development Bank Research Bulletin.

"China has one of the longest life expectancy among low-income countries. This was seen as a major achievement compared to Africa, but now it starts to become a problem. By 2040, the UN projects that the share of elderly in Chinese population will rise to 28%. By then, there will be 397 million Chinese elders, which is more than the total current population of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom combined. Among them 100 million will be over 80 years ago, who are very likely to be disabled in some ways.
continue reading

No comments: