Beijing, Jan 18: “China will get old, before it gets rich.” This was the assessment by many experts about China. This was also a nightmare for the CCP (Chinese Commusinst Party). It seems like this nightmare is becoming a reality today. China has hit record low birth rates, while life expectancy in China is rising everyday.
The birth rate in China plummeted to a record low last year, official data showed Monday, as analysts warn that faster-than-expected aging could deepen economic growth concerns. Beijing has been grappling with a looming demographic crisis amid a rapidly aging workforce, slowing economy and the country's weakest population growth in decades.
The birth rate of the world's second-biggest economy slipped to 7.52 births per 1,000 people, according to National Bureau of Statistics data, down from 8.52 in 2020. This marks the lowest figure logged in the country's annual Statistical Yearbook data since 1978, and is also the lowest since Communist China was founded in 1949.
Although officials relaxed the nation's "one-child policy" in 2016 -- allowing couples to have two children and easing one of the world's strictest family planning regulations -- the changes have failed to bring about a baby boom.
Last year, Chinese authorities extended the policy to allow couples three children. In 2021, the country logged 10.62 million births according to official data. The natural population growth rate plunged to 0.34 per 1,000 people, from an earlier 1.45 figure.
"The demographic challenge is well known but the speed of population aging is clearly faster than expected," said Zhiwei Zhang, chief economist at Pinpoint Asset Management.
A country like China with Aging population issue is in grave danger. Today many Western European countries and Japan are also aging and aging faster than China. But many western European countries are promoting immigration to solve their workforce problem. On the other hand, just like Japan, China doesn't believe in immigration on a large scale. But Unlike Japan, China is not rich enough to switch to automation entirely. This poses a unique problem in front of China of aging before getting rich.