The government has already been nuancing the one-child policy and that's been going on for years. about a third of the families in China have one child, and about two-thirds have two or more. In the countryside, farmers are usually allowed to have two. In some places it depends on the gender of the first child. Ethnic minorities are allowed to have three children and I've been to some ethnic minority areas where they have three or four or five or six. So this isn't quite as radical as it might seem at first. (Part of this announcement referred to illegal children. What does that mean?) That means that they'd perhaps already had a second, illegal child. Part of the announcement says there might be a ceasing of the fines. (Is there any likelihood that the policy will be reconsidered?) That's already been happening to some extent. If two only children come of age and marry each other, they can have two kids. In other places, the policy is being relaxed. In one province, the local government allowed parents to have two kids and that did the trick, people wanted just two kids. (Is there any possibility that adoption rates will go up?) Yes, there are at least 4,000 orphans as a result of the earthquake and a lot of Chinese have been inquiring about adopting them.
GlobalPost.com is now PRI.org
GlobalPost and PRI have joined forces to expand in-depth global news reporting to create a more informed, connected and empathetic world.Learn why See GlobalPost stories Dismiss