China Inititiates Social Reforms

A Chinese government official has said the change in the regime’s one-child policy likely will have little impact on population growth. This week the government announced couples in which one parent is an only child would be allowed to have more than one child, a change in a decades-long policy.

Wang Pei’an, deputy director of the National Health and Family Planning Commission (NHFPC), told Xinhua, the government’s official newspaper, “China’s population will not grow substantially in the short term. Although newborn population will increase in the next few years, it will be equivalent to that around 2000, so it is safe to say that new birth policy will not be a problem.”

The change is part of a group of “reforms” the government has rolled out. The CCP Central Committee also decided ot abolish China’s labor camps and will lessen the number of crimes subject to the death penalty.

The Christian Science Monitor notes that the change in the one-child policy has been developed over the last decade and is an indication of the “degree to which President Xi Jinping has been able to consolidate power during his first year in office.” The Daily Telegraph echoes the judgment that the reforms are representative of the masterful way in which Xi is navigating the political roads.

“Alongside these reforms, the Party Plenum showed how Xi is accumulating authority to make him the most powerful Chinese leader since Deng two  decades ago. In the past year, he has brought down potential rivals, notably the maverick politician Bo Xilai who is now serving a life sentence for corruption and whose wife was handed a suspended death sentence for murdering he British businessman, Neil Heywood. He has used an anti-graft   campaign to enforce his will on officials and is reported to have installed a special high-level police unit reporting directly to him. As Chairman of the Central Military Commission, Xi has good links with the large and politically important People’s Liberation Army,” writes Jonathan Fenby.

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