UNITED NATIONS, March 31 (Xinhua) -- A top Chinese
family planning official said here on Tuesday that if China has not implemented
its family planning policy, its total population would have exceeded 1.7 billion
Taking the floor at the 42nd session of the UN Commission on Population and Development, which opened here on Monday, Li Bin, China's minister in charge of the National Population and Family Planning Commission, said: "At present, China has a total population of 1.328 billion. Without the implementation of the family planning policy, total population in China would have exceeded 1.7 billion in 2008."
Li Bin, China's minister in charge of the National Population and Family Planning Commission, speaks at the 42nd session of the UN Commission on Population and Development, March 31, 2009. Li said on Tuesday that China has achieved relevant Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) ahead of time and if China has not implemented its family planning policy, its total population would have exceeded 1.7 billion in 2008. (Xinhua/Shen Hong)
Overpopulation is one of China's primary problems,
said Li, adding that thanks to the family planning efforts, the total fertility
rate (TFR) of Chinese women has declined from 5.8 in 1970 to below replacement
level in 1991 and is now stabilized at around 1.8.
Li said China has achieved relevant Millennium
Development Goals (MDGs) ahead of time, by raising average life expectancy from
68 at the end of the 1970s to 73 at present, reducing infant mortality rate and
mortality rate of children under 5 to 14.9 per thousand and 24 per thousand
respectively, and reducing maternal mortality rate to 34.2 per 100,000.
China also increased average per capita education
attainment of the population aged 15 and above from 4.5 years to 8.5 years in
2007, and achieved a 99.3-percent coverage rate nationwide with regard to
universal access to 9-year compulsory education. The rural poverty population
has been reduced from 250 million to 40.07 million, which helped accelerate the
global poverty alleviation process. China's rank on Human Development Index
(HDI) rose from No. 105 in 1990 to No. 81 in 2007, the minister said.
China's family planning policy has been in effect for
more than three decades. The policy limits most couples to one child in urban
areas and two in rural areas, and it has prevented an estimated 400 million
The week-long annual session of the Commission of
Population and Development this year focused on the contribution of the Program
of Action of ICPD, a consensus reached at the Cairo conference in 1994, to the
internationally agreed development goals, including the MDGs.