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Monday, September 20, 2004

At this rate, extra children could boost China's GDP!

The one-child policy in China has many loopholes. Rural couples whose first child is a girl may try again for a boy. Minorities are allowed two children and affluent couples may pay "social alimony" for additional offspring. I had no idea it was this high.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about how urban demographers are disparaging DINKs in China. The post has excerpts from a number of articles from Chinese media, voicing various analyses and opinions on childless couples. They speak volumes about what happens when a deeply traditional society hits rapid reform head-on.

As I read the following story, I wondered, as I do often when I read Chinese news, what else may be involved here. Selective enforcement is apparently one of those "Chinese characteristics." Did someone in this household run afoul of more than the one-child policy? My bet would be they had.

Couple Fined $94,000 for One-Child Rule Lapse

Mon Sep 20, 9:03 AM ET Reuters via Yahoo

BEIJING (Reuters) - A court in China's southern boomtown of Shenzhen has fined a couple 780,000 yuan ($94,250) and sealed off their house for having more than one child, the Beijing Morning Post said Monday.

The pair were among nine couples who were fined "social fostering fees" for their extra children, the newspaper said. They had their first boy in 1997 and last year had twin boys, the newspaper said.

With approximately 1.3 billion people, China is the world's most populous nation. It has stringent rules on family planning that allow couples usually to have just one child, at least in cities, and limit numbers elsewhere.

The couple's house had been sealed up "according to the law," the paper said, or until they pay the fine which was unusually large. A house is sealed with a white paper bearing the stamp of a local court pasted across the front door.

Punishment for having more than one child can include having the power to the offending couple's house or to the houses of relatives being cut off.

// posted by Ellen @  17:58   //Permalink// 
Ellen says hey
Mainer, New Yawka, Beijinger, Californian, points between. News, views and ballyhoos that piqued my interest and caused me to sigh, cry, chuckle, groan or throw something.


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