A Chinese county is offering a financial incentive for couples getting married – but the bride has to be aged 25 years or younger.
The Changshan County in eastern China has come up with the plan in a bid to tackle the drop in the number of babies being born – and its aging population.
Dubbed a “reward”, eligible couples will be given of 1,000 yuan (about £110). This plan, announced on the county’s official WeChat account, aims to encourage young couples to get married and start families.
It’s especially for those getting married for the first time. Along with the cash reward, it is also offering help with things like taking care of kids, getting pregnant, and educational support for couples who have children.
China is worried because fewer and fewer couples are officially tying the knot.
This is causing the number of babies being born to go down. In 2022, the number of people getting married hit the lowest point since 1986. This means there were way fewer weddings in 2022 compared to 2021.
Adding to the problem, the number of babies being born is also decreasing. In 2022, for every 1,000 people, only about 1.09 babies were born. This is really low and shows that many people aren’t having babies.
Part of the reason for this is that raising kids can cost a lot of money, and some people are worried that having kids could make it hard to do well at their jobs.
There are also old-fashioned ideas about what women and men should do, which makes things more complicated.
Besides all this, many young people in China are also worried about money and their country’s economy. They’re not feeling very sure about spending cash on starting families.
To deal with these problems, the county and the whole country are trying new ideas to encourage marriage rates to increase, with the hope couples will go onto start a family.
The cash reward for young couples in Changshan County is one of these new ideas. By giving money to couples who start their families early, they hope to make things a bit easier for young people and ensure there are enough babies born to keep the country’s population healthy in the future.