China’s Population Control Methods and Challenges


China has a very high population that makes it among the most populated nations in the world. This number accounts for about 21% of the global population. The country encounters serious challenges because of its high population, especially in the coming years, as the population increases. Economic and social challenges are inevitable if the government fails to implement strong ad efficient policies and legislation to control the rate of population growth.

Overpopulation has numerous challenges that include a high rate of degradation of land and other important resources, environmental pollution, and low standards of living. In the past few decades, several strategies have been devised to mitigate the problem. However, the population continues to grow, and related challenges continue to emerge. One of the most famous solutions to the problem that the government implemented was the one-child program.

Population control methods

The severity of the problem is so huge that the government enacted and implemented the “one child per family policy” in order to curb the high rate of population growth. This policy was implemented in 1979 and, upon its enactment, required anyone intending to get a child to obtain a birth certificate from the government first. According to the policy, people who follow its tenets are rewarded.

On the other hand, individuals who contravened the policy and got more than one child would face certain consequences. These consequences included payment of a tax amount that was half their income, lose their job, and let go of certain benefits such as pension or insurance. These measures were put in place to deter people from having more than one child. On the other hand, any women who had an unwanted or unplanned pregnancy would have to terminate it because it contravened the tenets of the policy. In the year 1980, the government was still concerned about the rate of population growth than had not been impacted significantly by the policy that had been implemented one year earlier.

Therefore, it implemented the birth-quota system in order to monitor the rate of population growth and, as such, be able to develop effective strategies of population control. This system involved the government setting certain population levels for different provinces in the country, depending on their resources and potential. In that regard, government officials were responsible for ensuring that the population growth of each region went hand in hand with the targets set by the government. The system was so stringent that any official whose region failed o meet the population targets set by the government were severely punished.

The government has used several methods and approaches to deal with the problem. These methods include birth control methods and the implementation of economic changes aimed at improving the welfare of the people. In the 1980s, the government required all people who had more than two children to undergo sterilization in order to ensure that they did not continue to bear more children. This was astringent and harsh population control measure that was implemented because the government was highly concerned about the magnitude of the problem.

Sterilization was so common that in 1982, government statistics showed that birth control methods such as vasectomy, tubal ligation, and abortion were embraced by the people. They accounted for more than a third of the birth control methods used by people. In addition, the government made several changes that transformed its economy from an agricultural to an industrial economy that had greater potential for growth.

Challenges of population control policies

China has faced numerous challenges owing to its numerous population control policies that have been implemented in past years. First, the policies were complicated and, therefore, difficult to implement, evaluate, and gauge their effectiveness towards attaining population control goals. In addition, their success has been minimal compared to the expected outcomes. Many government officials whose regions failed to meet government goals falsified statistics in order to avoid punishment by proving that the regions had attained population control goals. For instance, this has resulted in erroneous population tallies because officials fail to report certain births and therefore misrepresent the true state of the country’s population growth.

The birth-quota system has been in place for a long time, but its success has not been forthcoming. Many citizens do not have birth certificates because of anomalies in the process of registration that involved the omission of certain children. Many families that have more than one child made the decision to have other children without any government authorization. In rural areas, the system is highly unsuccessful because the people who live there have developed alternative means of circumventing the system and bearing more than one child. Families with numerous children enjoy the benefits of having a big family that takes care of family chores.

The government has, in the past, had to deal with the consequences of its actions due to the effect of its strict population control policies and systems that the people dislike. The government’s sterilization policy has been criticized by many countries in the world because it should be a matter of personal choice and not a legal requirement. Incidents of retaliation have been experienced by the citizens in opposition to the one-child-per-family policy.

The rate of female infanticide has been on the rise in china. This has been caused by the cultural preference of boys in a society in which traditions and customs are highly valued and practiced. In that regard, the government has made certain changes to the policy by implementing the “daughter-only-household” policy. According to the policy, any rural couple that bears a daughter as their first child can have a second child.

Benefits of population control

The Chinese government has successfully been able to raise the living standards of its people by controlling population growth in the last five decades. Many people have access to natural resources, such as water and natural gas. In addition, many people have access to health care services, such as insurance. Other benefits include lower rates of infant mortality, higher life expectancy, reduction in the incidence o poverty, and rapid economic growth.


The Chinese government has dealt with the challenge of population growth for many years. It has implemented several policies such as the one-child program and sterilization to curb high population growth. However, these strategies have been largely unpopular because of opposition from citizens and the international community for their harshness. Population control has helped China develop its economy by leaps and bounds. It is vital for the Chinese government to implement population control policies that are supported by the people, and that do not violate their human rights. It is important for Chinese people to find a solution to the problem before it reaches disastrous levels.

Cite this paper

Select style


Premium Papers. (2023, January 3). China's Population Control Methods and Challenges. Retrieved from


Premium Papers. (2023, January 3). China's Population Control Methods and Challenges.

Work Cited

"China's Population Control Methods and Challenges." Premium Papers, 3 Jan. 2023,


Premium Papers. (2023) 'China's Population Control Methods and Challenges'. 3 January.


Premium Papers. 2023. "China's Population Control Methods and Challenges." January 3, 2023.

1. Premium Papers. "China's Population Control Methods and Challenges." January 3, 2023.


Premium Papers. "China's Population Control Methods and Challenges." January 3, 2023.