China's population to peak at 1.45 billion in 2030, drop to 1.1 billion by 2100

By Bai Tiantian Source:Global Times Published: 2017/3/11 14:37:41

China's population is expected to peak at 1.45 billion in 2030, then drop to 1.4 billion by 2050 and 1.1 billion by the end of this century, China's top health authorities said on Saturday. 

Wang Pei'an, deputy head of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, released the numbers on Saturday at a sideline press conference during the ongoing two sessions in Beijing. 

"China does not lack in population, not in a few decades, not in 100 years," said Wang, who added the country should focus more on demographics and education levels.

According to Wang, China's working age population, of those between 15 and 64 years old, is a little over 1 billion and accounts for 73 percent of the total population. The working age population will gradually drop to 985 million in 2020 and to around 800 million by 2050. 

In comparison, the working age population accounts for 66 percent of total population in the US, 67 percent in Europe and 61 percent in Japan. 

"Although the total working age population in developed countries in the US and Europe is around 730 million, which is less than our 1 billion, they have a much higher productivity rate," Wang said, noting that the drop in workers will be compensated by advances in technology. 

In January 2016, China relaxed its decade-long birth control policy, allowing couples to have a second child if one of the parents has no siblings. 

Wang noted that following the second-child policy, a total of 18.46 million births were recorded across China in 2016. The number is the largest since 2000 and is 2 million more than past averages. 

According to Wang, China's second-child policy applies to some 90 million people but only 28 percent are likely to have a second child. Wang said working women, a lack of child care centers across the country and the rising cost of raising a child are factors.  

"A majority of Chinese families rely on grandparents to raise children less than 3 years old," Wang said at the press conference. 

Wang summarized the implementation of the second-child policy as "within expectation." 

China expects the average yearly number of births to vary between 17 million and 19 million from now to 2020, Wang added.


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