- 1950s: High birth rate encouraged
- 1956-60: Great famine
- 1960s: High birth rate. Population grew by 55 million per year
- 1970s: Family planning programme introduced. Population grew by 40 million per year. Average family still over 3 children.
- 1979: One child per family policy. Families with one child got free education, priority housing, pensions and family benefits. Those with two children lost those concessions and were fined.
- 1980s: Population still grew by up to 25 million per year due to large numbers in reproductive age groups (20-39). Many single children spoilt. Rapid growth in ageing population. Shortage of females.
- 1990s: Some relaxation. Two children in rural areas if first was a girl. Two in other areas if first was disabled. Small ethnic groups were exempt. Annual population growth averaged 13.5 million.
- 1996: Further controls and inducements made.
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- Permission and a certificate for all pregnancies.
- Pregnancies without a certificate may be ended by abortion.
- Compulsory birth control for all women with one child.
- Compulsory sterilization of all couples with two children.
- Fines, night raids on houses where there is a second child.
- One child families get priority in education, health and housing.
- Couples with one child get a 10 per cent wage bonus.
- A couple with a second child pay a fine and a tax each year.
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In rural places they needed more children to work the land.
They were quickly running out of resources and because the country was overcrowded there was a strain on the healthcare system and public transport.
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