As Reuters reported, the rate of 7.52 births per 1,000 people in 2021 was the lowest since the National Statistics Bureau began compiling statistics in 1949.
The data show that in 2021, China’s population’s natural growth rate—which does not include migration—was only 0.034%, which is the lowest since 1960.
This then put more pressure on officials to encourage more births.
To solve the declining birth rate issue, some parts of China are now encouraging couples to have second or third children by offering bonuses.
According to Taiwanese news outlet Central News Agency, to solve the declining birth rate issue, some parts of China are now encouraging couples to have second or third children by offering bonuses.
The news outlet cited The Paper as reporting that the Daxing’anling District Administrative Office of Heilongjiang Province has recently released a new draft for optimizing the birth policy in the district.
Accordingly, besides other benefits, a one-time reward of 20,000 yuan (about $2,800) will be given to couples who have a third child as long as they are registered in Daxing’anling, work, and live there.
Moreover, until the child turns three years old, the second and third children will each receive 300 yuan (about $43) and 500 yuan (about $72) per month, respectively.
Meanwhile, Yunnan province also announced its plan to boost the fertility rate.
Parents of 3 children will receive a one-time maternity subsidy of up to 5,000 yuan (about $710.)
Although China abandoned the one-child policy in 2016, the high cost of urban life has discouraged families from having more children.
It’s worth mentioning that China’s zero-COVID policy with strict measures has significantly reduced people’s desire to have children.
In an article published in August this year, a prominent Chinese demographer Yi Fuxian told Reuters, “China’s zero-COVID policy has led to a zero economy, zero marriages, zero fertility.”
The demographer states that several accounts of people during the lockdown may have a significant impact on parenthood goals.
During lockdowns in Shanghai and other places, there were many reports of people losing their jobs or not being able to get food or medical care. There were also many reports of police breaking into homes to take people, including the elderly and children, to quarantine centers.