hina saw a rising fertility rate in 2016 after the government lifted its ban on each family having a second baby on January 1, 2016.
According to the latest statistics by China’s National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC), a total of 18.46 million babies were born in 2016, nearly 2 million more than in 2015 which helped send the 2016 fertility rate up to 1.7, meaning on average every woman of childbearing age has 1.7 children.
NHFPC’s statement attributed the growth to China’s second-baby policy, claiming that the number of the second or above babies in one family have made up over 45 percent of the total newborn babies, the highest ratio since 2000.
Yet, despite the growth, many experts still believe that the current fertility rate cannot balance China’s aging population. Some experts also warned against a shrinking number of women of childbearing age. In March 2017, Huang Xihua, a delegate to China’s National People’s Congress, the country’s highest legislative body, proposed relaxing the controls on childbirth, to allow every family to have as many babies as they like.