The announcement of the new Chinese policy to allow couples to have three children caused a storm of discussions in reality and virtual worlds, the parties of which sometimes questioned its feasibility, and at other times about the supportive policies that ensure its implementation, not to mention those who opposed it with facts on the ground that push many not to respond to them.
What are the reasons that prompted China to adopt the new policy after years of allowing only two children, and do preferential policies succeed in pushing the Chinese to have children? Read also New visas for residence, work and study .. Is it time to immigrate to Japan?Birth in America .. Women tell their true experiences of obtaining a passport for their children Less than one child per woman.. South Korea has the lowest fertility rate in the world To correct the demographic structure .. China allows families to have a third child
the ghost of old age
Since the 1990s, the aging process in China has accelerated. The number of elderly people aged over 65 years has increased to 13.5 percent of the population, an increase of 4.63 percentage points compared to the situation 10 years ago, and it is estimated that by 2040, the proportion of elderly people aged 65 years and over will exceed 20% of the total population.
According to the data of the Chinese Census 2020, the death difference between the sexes makes the elderly women become the vast majority of the elderly population, while the number of men outnumbers the number of women in general.
And the Chinese are aging rapidly. According to research, the first country to experience aging is France, but it takes about 150 years to move from the youth stage to the aging population, but this transformation in China needs only 30 years.
Some local media indicated that the development of aging rates is threatening the workforce, which prompted the government to propose the idea of gradually raising the retirement age by 5 years for both sexes from 2021 to 2025, according to what was stated in the government work report that was submitted to the Chinese Parliament in last March.
low birth rate
The number of newborns in China declined from 18 million in 2016 to 12 million in 2020, and the proportion of minors under 14 years old reached 17.95% of the total population.
“Allowing three children is conducive to improving the country’s demographic structure,” the Xinhua News Agency quoted the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee as saying.
However, birth liberation policies have not yet succeeded in increasing the desire to have children. Since the introduction of the “two-child policy” in early 2016, the birth rate has reached 1.3%, according to the seventh census, the lowest level since 1953.
Opportunities and obstacles
Liang Jianchang, professor of economics at Beijing University, believes that the three-child policy is an improvement over the two-child policy, but calls for “encouraging unconditional childbearing, because the fertility rate in China is really low.”
In an article, Liang explained that the expected increase of the “three-birth” policy will reach hundreds of thousands of children each year and remain far from a million, pointing to the need to adopt a future policy that would promote the idea of childbearing in Chinese families.
In turn, the researcher in Chinese affairs, Dr. Naela Saeed, told Al Jazeera Net that the failure of the measures taken by China to encourage the birth of the third child, will eventually force it to completely cancel the birth control policy, implement a package of policies that include tax incentives, support for education and housing, and increase the number of maternity leave days, and universal childcare support, with the aim of curbing rising aging and increasing birth rates.
The Chinese state pledged to “strengthen tax deductions, housing and other support policies”, but these incentives did not change the opinion of some on being satisfied with one child or not having children at all, as many see that the costs of life, especially in major cities, are the most prominent reason for not having more children. .
Tzechian tells Al Jazeera Net, that other factors prevent her from having another child, even if money is available, as she and her husband work in a government institution, and they do not have enough time to take care of their only child at the current stage, as the grandparents take care of that.
She explains that her parents and her husband’s parents are old and in need of care, “they can barely take care of her only child” and this prevents her from thinking about having children again.
As for Wang Zhaoqiu, who is expecting his first child, he says that these policies that the country needs to promote population development will create a major problem, leading to the dismantling of Chinese families due to problems resulting from the burdens they will create, explaining in an interview with Al Jazeera Net, that the expensive family care costs will not be able to any Government support from easing it, as “national support policies will extend for long periods, and will not have a tangible immediate effect,” he said