Over 5 percent of Chinese women remain childless at 49

A study released noted that the rising trend of lifetime childlessness could further push down China's overall fertility level and its birthrates.


The section of Frog Prince brand, which focuses on infant care products, during an expo in Fuzhou, Fujian province. [Photo provided to China Daily]

June 30, 2023

BEIJING – Around 5.2 percent of Chinese women who had reached the age of 49 remained childless in 2020, according to a study released by the China Population and Development Research Center on Wednesday.

The rate is lower than the 11 percent from the United States and 19 percent from European Union countries, said the study.

It added that well-educated women, as well as those living in urban areas, northeastern provinces and regions seeing extremely low fertility levels, were more likely to have never given birth by 49.

“With accelerating urbanization, development of higher education and continuous delays in marriage and childbearing, China’s lifetime childlessness rate is expected to continue rising in the future,” said the study.

It said that the rising trend of lifetime childlessness could further push down China’s overall fertility level and its birthrates, and impact the realization of an appropriate fertility level.

Researchers of the study call for paying attention to the phenomenon and devising response strategies in advance.

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