Geography - China's One Child Policy

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  • Created by: Dan S.
  • Created on: 25-05-13 15:22

One Child Policy Stats

  • China's population in 2006: 1.3 billion.
  • Age structure: 0-14=20.8%, 15-64=71.4%, 65+=7.7%.
  • Life Expectancy at birth in 2006: 72.6 years.
  • Literacy rate: Male=95.1%, Female=86.5%.
  • % population living below the poverty line: 10%
  • China is an RIC (Recently Industrialised Country)
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Why is there a OCP? and China's growth

Why is the OCP?

  • China has 25% of the world's population.
  • China only has 7% of the Earth's arable lands and 5% of the Earth's fossil fuels.
  • A large proporiton of the land is unsuitable for agriculture because there are mountains, deserts and dense forests.


  • In 1949 China's population was 550million.
  • Mao Zedong decided that China needed a larger population to fuel and industrial and agricultural revolution.
  • This was called 'The Great Leap Forwards'.
  • By 1976, the population had swelled to 900million.
  • 2 thirds of the populatin were under 30 and as they were reaching their child bearing age there was a huge famine.
  • A population cap was needed.
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The OCP and the Exceptions

The Policy

  • Each couple is allowed to have one child.
  • That child's medical and educational expenses are paid for them.
  • If you have more than one child, you are strongly encouraged to have an abortion.
  • If you do have another child, you have to pay back all the costs of your first child and don't get any help with your first or second children.

The Exceptions

  • First child is severly disabled.
  • Multiple births.
  • Ethnic minorities.
  • Foreigners.
  • Farmers in rural areas if your first child is a girl.
  • Couple who are both only children.
  • If the first child dies.
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Female Infanticide

  • Infanticide is the killing of babies.
  • Girls are killed because they cannot support their families when they get older.
  • They are sometimes left by the road, others are left to starve, others are fed poison in their milk.
  • There are now 120 boys for every 100 girls.
  • China is now missing around 35million girls.
  • Girls are sometimes called Maggots in the rice.
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Impacts of China's OCP


  • No pension system set up.
  • Basic pension is equivalent of $8.75 a month.
  • OCP could pressure 3rd generation to look after 6 elderly people as LE increases.
  • $2.9 trillion social security defecit in 2013.


  • OCP has prevented 400million births.
  • People die of starvation.
  • Bad pension system.
  • Dozens of villages have a lot of men and barely any women.
  • Backlash: more dependency : gender imbalance : increased divorce rate : sex-selective abortion : uneven implementation : negative growth
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