China’s new three-child policy has received a lackluster reception among its population. Author Zhang Lijia offers a few tips for the government to make its policy attractive for women: offer financial incentives, significantly expand its childcare capacity, and promote women-friendly policies and equality, she writes in the South China Morning Post.
Why aren’t young people keen on having children these days? First, living costs – and child-rearing costs – are high. Although the state offers nine years of compulsory education, urban parents are all vying to sign up their children for extra lessons and extracurricular activities, from English to piano.
Furthermore, many educated professional women hesitate to have children due to the prevalence of sexual discrimination in the job marketplace.
Some companies refuse to hire women of child-bearing age or sack them if they become pregnant. I have heard stories of women being required to promise not to have children as a precondition for employment.
Are you looking for more political analysts at the China Speakers Bureau? Do check out this list.