China’s population is anticipated to peak in 2021 and continuously fall over the coming years in a major demographic turning point, according demographics expert James Liang, reports the South China Morning Post. Liang told the Post on Thursday that the number of births across the country fell 20% to about 10 million in 2021, citing published data from local Chinese authorities, while the number of deaths could be more than 10 million this year.
“That means the size of China’s population has peaked much earlier than previously expected,” said Liang, who has been one of the country’s loudest voices calling for pro-birth policies over the years.
Chinese mothers gave birth to just 12 million babies last year, down from 14.65 million in 2019, marking an 18% decline year on year and continuing the descent to a near six-decade low. That means the national birth rate dropped to a record low of 8.52 births for every 1,000 people.