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Single Chinese rural men fight for brides

By Huang Jin (People's Daily Online)    13:34, February 25, 2016
Single Chinese rural men fight for brides

A crisis has come for rural single men to find a bride in China. With males born in the 1990s entering a marriageable age, the crisis will soon be even worse, according to Li Shuzhou, professor at the Institute for Population and Development of Xi'an Jiaotong University.

According to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics, China's sex ratio at birth in 2015 was 113.51. In the past 20 years, this figure was once higher than 120 (120 males for every 100 females in the population). Today, those born in the era of the highest sex ratio are starting to think about marriage.

Li conducted research on the population born between 1980 and 2010 in China, and concluded that there were about 36 million more males born during those 30 years than females. "For men born after 1980, 10 to 15 percent will be unable to find a mate. The situation is even worse for men in rural areas," Li said.

In rural areas of China today, if a man can’t find a wife before 30, his chances of marrying become almost zero. "Women have the absolute advantage in the rural marriage market," said Li Shun, a PhD student whose hometown is located in the northern rural region of Shanxi province.

Because of the gender imbalance, rural men have to marry earlier in order to seize the scarce resources. Even divorced women are viable options in the fight for marriage partners. Some poor rural men are ready to do anything to find a woman.

Ji Rusong, a lawyer from a rural area, said: “These days, appearance, age and character don't matter at all for a rural woman looking for a husband. Women with physical disabilities or mental retardation can also be targeted by matchmakers. As long as you are a woman, there will be no problem for you to find a husband." 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Huang Jin,Bianji)

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