China on 29 October 2015 allowed all couples to have two children and scrapped its decade-long One Child Policy. The decision is intended to balance population development and address the challenge of an ageing population.
The announcement was made through a communiqué issued by the ruling communist party after a four-day Communist party summit in Beijing.
The summit participated by China’s top leaders saw debate on financial reforms and how to maintain growth at a time of heightened concerns about the economy.
One Child Policy was introduced in 1980 as a way to curb the population and limit demands for water and other resources. The controversial policy restricted most couples to only a single offspring, and for years’ it was debated that the policy resulted in China’s economic boom.
As an active response to an ageing population and to manage the demography of the country, China has been relaxing the family planning laws. Earlier on 28 December 2013, it allowed minority ethnic families and rural couples whose firstborn child was a girl to have one more child.
It seems that the decision will help China in reducing its gender imbalance. As the previous decision of 1980s led to forced sterilizations, infanticide and sex-selective abortions, causing a dramatic gender imbalance which meant millions of men will never find female partners.
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