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Sichuan relaxes one-child policy

China Daily, March 21, 2014 Adjust font size:

Southwest China's Sichuan Province on Thursday relaxed the one-child policy, the fifth Chinese region to allow couples to have a second baby if one parent is an only child.

An amendment to the Sichuan Provincial Population and Family Planning Regulations was approved at a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Sichuan People's Congress, according to a statement from the province's population and family planning commission.

There are 1.28 million families in the province that qualify to have a second child, and 70 percent of them are willing to have another baby, the statement said.

Sichuan follows Tianjin municipality, east China's Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Anhui provinces in relaxing the policy.

Relaxation of the rule is a significant change to the country's family-planning policy that has been in effect for more than three decades. The move is part of a plan to raise fertility rates and ease the financial burden on China's rapidly aging population.

Provincial-level governments in Beijing, Guangxi, Hubei and Jiangsu have announced their intentions to relax the policy in March. Others, including Hunan, Qinghai and Shanghai, promised changes in the first half of the year.

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