BEIJING (AP) — Chinese authorities expect that easing the country’s one-child policy will add more than 30 million people to the country’s labor force by 2050, a senior official said Tuesday.
Wang Pei’an, spokesman for the National Health and Family Planning Commission, said at a news conference that more than 90 million women will become eligible for having a second child when China formally moves away from the one-child policy to allow all couples to have two children.
The new policy is expected to add 3 million extra births each year in the initial years, Wang said. China had 16.87 million births last year, and the easing of the policy is expected to boost the annual figure to nearly 20 million births — in line with China’s population goals, he said.
Lu Jiehua, an expert on demographics at Peking University, said the 30 million estimate appears to be conservative, given an estimate of 3 million extra births per year. “Maybe the consideration is that the birthrate will drop after the initial several years,” Lu said.