Population crisis is coming! New York Times says China’s refusal to fully open up childbirth “fears a missed opportunity”

Beijing has released the results of its decennial national census, which shows that China is currently facing a serious demographic crisis, and a special article in foreign media analyzing whether the authorities will fully open up childbirth.

According to the New York Times, China’s birth rate has fallen sharply in recent years, with the number of births last year even dropping to the lowest level since the Mao era.

The New York Times analysis suggests that the ruling Chinese Communist Party is reluctant to fully relinquish control and resist the wholesale removal of fertility restrictions, instead taking a more roundabout, incremental approach with a number of exemptions, but a number of experts and scholars argue that the current Chinese approach would be a missed opportunity.

In an interview with New Times, Huang Wenzheng, a demographer at the Beijing-based research center Globalization Think Tank, said it would be contradictory to encourage births while not lifting planned birth restrictions, arguing that lifting all birth restrictions would send an important message, and that is exactly what Beijing should be doing now.

A paper published by China’s central bank in April is even more pessimistic, arguing that the government “should seize the current period when the fertility policy is still hard-restricted to fully open up and release the higher fertility intentions of the private sector in a timely manner,” warning that any slight delay “would miss a valuable window to respond to the demographic transition with a fertility policy “.