The family planning policy has helped China prevent 400 million births by the end of 2005, Zhang Weiqing, minister in charge of the National Population and Family Planning Commission, has said.
In an interview with "Qiushi" (Seeking Truth From Facts) magazine, he said thanks to hard efforts in the past three decades, China has curbed fast population growth and recorded low birth rate, reducing 300 million births by 1998 and 400 million births by 2005.
Government statistics show that there are 1.8 children for a Chinese couple on average, while the number of children for each couple came to six in the early 1970s when the family planning policy was just introduced.
The 400 million births, if not prevented, would postpone China's drive to build a well-off society, said Zhang.
Such an achievement should be recognized as many developed countries spent over a century before reaching low birth rates, he said.