The Chinese government will adhere to the basic policy
of family planning with improved services and stronger leadership,
said Premier Wen Jiabao at a national conference.
Family planning was crucial to China's modernization
and the building of a harmonious society, Wen told the national
conference on population and family planning held on Tuesday and
The priority and the most difficult task of family
planning was in the countryside, where maintaining a low birth rate
was crucial, said Wen, calling for extended coverage of rewards and
subsidies for rural people.
The administration and service should be improved to
grant subsidies and social insurance in encouraging birth control,
and more needy families should be covered by social assistance
Family planning among migrant workers needed to be
strengthened as well, Wen added.
He stressed that the Party committees and local
governments must enhance leadership and improve the working and
living conditions of the family planning personnel.
State Councilor Hua Jianmin said local governments
should give the same free birth control services to migrant workers
as they give to local residents.
Hua said gender identification for non-medical
purposes would be severely punished and policies advocating the
rights of girls and women as well as gender equality and birth
control would be carried out.
The prevention and intervention of birth defects would
be strengthened too, he said.
(Xinhua News Agency December 28, 2006)