Remarried couples still face baby restrictions

By Cao Siqi Source:Global Times Published: 2015-3-30 0:18:02

The regional government of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region recently defended its decision to reject a couple's application to have a baby on the grounds that one of them has two children from a previous marriage, saying that it was in line with the region's family planning regulations.

The 34-year-old woman surnamed Huang and her husband - who had two children with his ex-wife - began to apply for permission to have a baby of their own in 2014, but their application has been repeatedly rejected due to local family planning regulations.

"But we are allowed to have a baby of our own, according to central government guidelines," Huang, who has no previous husband or children and is an only child, told the Global Times.

The National Health and Family Planning Commission issued guidelines that would allow remarried couples in which one partner is an only child to have a single baby under three scenarios. The scenarios include if the partner that is an only child has no offspring and their spouse has two children.

"It is only a recommendation and local authorities should abide by the local regulations," an employee of Guangxi's health and family planning commission surnamed Zhao was quoted as saying by the news portal

Zhao admitted that Guangxi's current family planning regulations "might be a little harsh [on such couples]," and that investigations and research have been carried out by the local authorities into remarried couples in case of future amendments to the family planning regulations.

Earlier government replies to Huang and her husband's applications read that the central government guidelines on remarried couples have not been applied in Guangxi due to its large population base and relatively fast population growth.

The local family planning regulations stipulate that remarried couples could be allowed to have a baby if one has only one child and the other has none. The region implemented a two-child policy in March last year, but made no amendments to its rules regarding remarried couples.

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