Chinese Births Drop to Lowest Level Since Pre-Cultural Revolution, Labour Force Contracts for Seventh Year


Chinese birthrates continued to decline in 2018 despite Beijing’s recent decision to rescind the long-standing One Child Policy.

Data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on 21 January indicate that China’s total population (excluding Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau) was 1.39528 billion as of the end of 2018, for an increase of 5.3 million compared to the end of the previous year.

China saw around 15.23 million births for full year 2018, for a decline of around 2 million compared to the reading of 17.23 million in 2017, and a birth rate of 10.94%.

According to a report form National Business Daily the number of births in China for 2018 is the lowest reading posted since 1961.

NBS data indicates that China’s working age population has been on a steady downward trajectory ever since 2012, for a contraction in the Chinese labour force of more than 27 million workers as of the end of 2018.

As of 2018 China was host to population of 897.29 million people aged between 16 and 59, accounting for 64.3% of the population, for a decline of 4.7 million compared to the figure of 901.99 million 2017.