China's one-child policy most strictly applied to Han Chinese living in urban areas of the country. China's one-child rule was created in 1979 by Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping to temporarily limit communist China's population growth. The law restricts urban couples to having only one child. It said that: Couples must not marry until their late 20s. China’s one-child policy has probably gotten as much time in the spotlight as the size of its population, the world’s largest at more than 1.39 billion people. Facts about China’s One Child Policy 9: the controversial policy. It was unique from other family planning policies around the world which focus on contraception, setting a legal limit on the size of a household in the country.  In 2015 China had an estimated 150 million single-child families with an estimated two-thirds of those thought to be a direct result of the policy. Mao had thought that a bigger population resulted in a stronger country, but of course they faced a lot more problems. Depiction of population growth in China (Photo Credit: Anton Watman/ Shutterstock) History of the one child policy Corrections? The claim by Chinese officials that the one child policy has helped avert 400 million births simply cannot be substantiated by facts. In rural areas, Han Chinese families could apply to have a second child if the first child was a girl. The one-child policy was enforced for most Chinese into the 21st century, but in late 2015 Chinese officials announced that the program was ending. The one-child policy is actually just one among a suite of efforts, such as delayed marriage and contraceptive use, that the Chinese government made in the mid-20th century to combat overpopulation in China. This is what was happening in China until when in 1980 the one-child policy came into existence in China. Although designated a "temporary measure," it remained in effect for more than 35 years. That became a concern, as the great majority of senior citizens in China relied on their children for support after they retired, and there were fewer children to support them. For families who observed the one-child rule, there were rewards: higher wages, better schooling and employment, and preferential treatment in obtaining governmental assistance (such as health care) and loans. China one child policy facts. China had gone above carrying capacity and there was not enough resources for everyone. As part of his master's program,... Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. The fertility rate in China dropped from 5.1 in the 1960’s to only 1.5 after the policy … One-child policy, official program initiated in the late 1970s and early ’80s by the central government of China, the purpose of which was to limit the great majority of family units in the country to one child each. Mao had thought that a bigger population resulted in a stronger country, but of course they faced a lot more problems. Most notably, the country’s overall sex ratio became skewed toward males—roughly between 3 and 4 percent more males than females. Only the Han people —the world’s largest ethnic group—were expected to comply. Would receive a 5-10% salary rise for limiting their family to one child. China's population is forecast to be stable and then decline slightly after 2030, and India will keep growing. Mao had thought that a bigger population resulted in a stronger country, but of course they faced a lot more problems. Tweet. China had gone above carrying capacity and there was not enough resources for everyone. The one-child policy was originally designed to be a "One-Generation Policy". Although the number of such children is not known, estimates have ranged from the hundreds of thousands to several million. In late 2015 the government announced that the one-child limit per family would end in 2016. Moreover, decades of the one-child policy have made single-child households the norm, experts say. When the one-child policy was adopted in 1979, China's population was about 972 million people. Those gains were offset to some degree by a similar drop in the death rate and a rise in life expectancy, but China’s overall rate of natural increase declined. It was taken as a temporary measure by the Chinese government to counter the population explode. The one-child policy exacerbated a traditional preference for boys, leading to selective abortions or infanticide targeting girls. It is the largest of all Asian countries and has the largest...…, Birth control, the voluntary limiting of human reproduction, using such means as sexual...…. Ethnic minorities, such as Uighurs and Tibetans, were allowed to have more than one child, and so were rural Chinese families if their firstborn was a baby girl. As a member of the strategic defense est… In China the fertility rate and the birth rate both decreased after 1980; the Chinese government estimated that some 400 million births had been prevented. Partager. Ken Pletcher was Senior Editor, Geography and History for Encyclopædia Britannica. Just over 51 percent of China's population lived in urban areas. Additionally, if a first child was born with birth defects or major health problems, the couple was usually permitted to have a second child. It is estimated that India will become the most populated country, surpassing China in 2027. The policy was enforced by methods ranging from offering financial perks for families in compliance and providing contraceptives to implementing forced sterilizations and forced abortions. Thirty-five years after its conception, China recently announced a comprehensive policy shift from one child to two children per family. Controversy has long surrounded China’s one-child policy, not only because it was a radical intervention by government in the reproductive lives of citizens but also because of how it was enforced and because of some of its unintended consequences. Broadly speaking, the One Child Policy was aimed at the Han Chinese people living in urban areas. After 2024, India is expected to become the world's most populous, when both countries' populations are expected to reach about 1.4 billion. Sign up to comment. 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