The number of new marriage licenses in China has hit a 13-year low so far in 2021, so the country announced an effort to lower the price tag of tying the knot.
The Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) said it will make marriage more affordable in 29 cities across the country after reports indicated that the average costs tied to weddings have jumped between 50 and 100 percent, the Financial Times reported. The paper pointed out that the figure is more than six times the annual household income.
Yang Zongtao, a senior official at the MCA, said the drop in marriages will impact birth rates and “in return economic and social development,” according to the paper.
“We are hoping to…actively create favorable conditions for more people of suitable ages to walk into marriage,” he said.
China is known for imposing strict limits on the number of offspring couples can produce and announced last summer that it would ease those rules to deal with a demographic imbalance. A once-in-a-decade census that was published in May revealed that Beijing is facing a shrinkage in its working-age population along with an increase in older residents. (See “CHINA: BIRTH LIMITS OUT, EDUCATION LIMITS IN.”)
President Xi Jinping said in May, during a meeting of the Communist Party’s Politburo, that China’s falling birthrate was a potential threat to the country’s national security. The government later announced that married couples would now be permitted to have up to three children, although doing away with birth limits altogether is under consideration.
There is also a gender imbalance in the country, the FT reported. There are currently 2.2 million single men from 25-34 and 1.2 million single women. 
The paper said women appear less interested than their male counterparts to take the plunge, with 60 percent calling marriage necessary, compared to 82 percent of men polled. Some women have even taken to social media to call wives “married donkeys,” for conforming to a patriarchal society. 
An official from Ningling, which is one of the locations considered an “experimental zone” for the MCA, told the paper that the city keeps reminding women and “their parents that happiness has nothing to do with how many engagement gifts they receive.” reported that the practice of a groom’s family paying a “bride price” has “grown to incredible proportions” in recent years, especially in the rural regions on the country. 
The report pointed to the 44th chapter of the Book of Rites in the Han Dynasty that says a groom’s family should “offer betrothal gifts (bride price) to the bride’s family, including money, jewelry, antiques, clothes, furniture, food, animals, etc.”
TREND FORECAST: While the world media keeps moaning about a population drop, never mentioned is the pace of speed of how the world population has exploded over the past 120 years… and the socioeconomic, geopolitical and environmental implications. 
Worried about a drop off in population? In 1900, China had about 400,000 people. Since then it has added one billion.
 And back then, the U.S. had 76 million people, today, 333 million. 
As for the global population, there were less than 2 billion people in 1900. Today there are nearly 8 billion people on the planet. 
Therefore, as for the media hype about depopulation and how it will hit China hard in the future, we do not agree with that forecast. If China has a few hundred million less people it will not negatively affect its economy, in fact, the more is not the merrier when cities are congested, traffic is jammed, pollution increases and resources diminish as populations expand. 

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