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China has 37 million more males than females
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16:03, July 10, 2007

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China has become the most imbalanced country in gender ratio of newborn babies in the world. This period of imbalance is also the longest time in the world. In 2005, the ratio between newborn girls and boys was 100:118.88, far from the average ratio of 100 to 104-107. In Jiangxi, Guangdong, Hainan, Anhui and Hunan provinces, the ratio is even higher- 100:130.

Experts said, on Wednesday at a seminar in Beijing, that China should deal with this problem immediately.

Since the 1980s, China's birth ratio between newborn girls and boys has been increasing:
1982: 100 to 108.5
1987: 100 to 110.9
1990: 100 to 111.3
1995: 100 to 115.6
2000: 100 to 116.9

In 2000, average ratio was 100:116.9. Except for areas such as the Xinjiang Uygor Autonomous and Tibet Autonomous regions; all the provinces were above the average ratio of 100 to 104-107. Some provinces had a ratio of 100:138.

As a result, there are 37 million more males than females now in China. Within the 0- 15 year age group, there are 18 million more boys than girls.

According to State Family Planning Commission, a social consequence of the gender imbalance is smuggling of women and children. In provinces highly imbalanced in gender, women and children become the victims of human trafficking. Illegal and forced marriages, as well as forced prostitution, have run rampant in some areas.

Li Huiying, deputy director of the women's research center in the central party's school, cited three major reasons for such a phenomenon: a long period of paying more attention to men than women, an incomplete social security system, and the abuse of ultra sound technology.

Liang Jun, director of the community education center in Henan Province, said China's social security system is incomplete; the rural security system is even more backward. Parents have a son to guarantee care when they are older. He said that if social security existed for everyone, it would effectively encourage their desire to have a baby- especially a boy.

The participants of the seminar assert that the gender ratio imbalance has something to do with the family planning policy; but that it is not the only reason for it. They directly blame the abuse of ultra sound technology. In many areas, due to lack of effective supervision of ultra sound use, many people choose the sex of their baby.

In order to solve this problem, China has implemented the following: Population and Family Planning Law, A Regulation on Banning Non-medical Need of Identifying the Gender of a Fetus, and Sexually Discriminative Artificial Suspension of Pregnancy. The Care for Girls Activity was also launched to advocate the idea that men and women are equal, in order to deal with the gender imbalance.

Participants from the seminar also hold that people should understand the significance and urgency of dealing with such a problem. To solve the problem, people must be creative in their thoughts; and utilize methods to monitor and prevent sexual discrimination. There should be gender education in the whole of society, and the idea that boys and girls are equal should be advocated. People should follow the family planning policy and be guided to change the traditional idea that women must follow men. Experts suggest that in order to shake the traditional idea, people should advocate the new idea that after marriage, men follow women. This will be an effective way of changing people's traditional ideas, and promoting equality between women and men.

By People's Daily Online

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