China recently announced the result of the latest national population census, claiming its total population reached 1,411.78 million, an increase of 72.06 million over the 1,339.72 million in 2010. The figures translate to a low annual growth rate of 5.38 percent over the past decade.
The number of new births was 12 million in 2020. Recently published provincial-level population data gives the number of births in 2021 as merely 10.62 million, a drop of 11.5 percent. Among all the provinces, only Guangdong’s new births stayed above 1 million, with a number of provinces hitting a record low in 2021.
The decline in births may be caused by late marriages and an increasing number of highly educated women who chose to have fewer or no children. The COVID-19 epidemic is seen as one of the factors influencing young people’s attitude toward marriage and their decision to marry and have children.
11 out of the 31 provinces registered negative population growth in 2021, including Heilongjiang, Liaoning, Jilin, Chongqing, Mongolia, Hunan, Hubei, Shanghai, Jiangsu, Hebei and Shanxi.
Source: Central News Agency (Taiwan), May 18, 2022