Beijing:The Chinese population dropped by 850,000 residents year-on-year in 2022 to 1,411 billion people for the first time in 60 years, the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics said on Tuesday.
“By the end of 2022, the national population was 1,411.75 million (including the population of 31 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities and servicemen, but excluding residents of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan and foreigners living in the 31 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities), a decrease of 0.85 million over that at the end of 2021,” the statistical office said in a statement.
The male population in China stood at 722.06 million, while the female population was estimated at 689.69 million, and “the sex ratio of the total population was 104.69 (the female is 100),” the statement read.
“In 2022, the number of births was 9.56 million with a birth rate of 6.77 per thousand; the number of deaths was 10.41 million with a mortality rate of 7.37 per thousand; the natural population growth rate was minus 0.60 per thousand,” the statistical office added.
The bureau also said that the population at the working age f rom 16 to 59 amounted to 875.6 million (62% of the Chinese total population), the number of people aged 60 and over was 280 million (19.8%) and population aged 65 and over was 209.8 million (14.9%).
The gender balance of the Chinese population was seriously affected by the “one-child” policy, introduced in 1979 in order to prevent overpopulation and famine. Under this policy, urban families had a right to have only one child, while rural families could have two children, but only if the first one was a girl.
In 2013, the Chinese authorities eased the restrictions. Couples, where at least one of the spouses was the only child in the family, were allowed to have a second child. Later, in 2016, all couples were allowed to have a second child. However, the measures not only did not cause a boom in the birth rate, but even resulted in the exact opposite effect.
In the summer of 2021, the authorities approved the adoption of amendments to the law on population. The amendments allowed families to have a third child and canceled all previously provided fines and payments.