Number of births in China 2009-2019

In 2019, around 14.65 million babies were born in China. The number of births decreased from 15.23 million in 2018 and 17.23 million in 2017.

Demographic development in China

Although the Chinese population has been growing for decades and is still growing at a slow pace, the annual number of births in China has been nearly stable for two decades now, ranging at around 16 million births per year since 2002. To curb the negative effects of an aging population, the Chinese government decided in 2013 to gradually relax the so called one-child-policy, which had been in effect since 1979. From 2016 onwards, parents in China were allowed to have two children in general. However, as the recent figures of births per year reveal, this policy change had only short-term effects on the general birth rate: the number of births slightly increased from 2014 onwards, but then fell again, 2018 even to a long time low. In 2018, China was still the most populous country in the world, closely followed by India. Yet the large population brings about severe demographic challenges for the country.

China’s aging population

The Chinese society is aging rapidly and facing a serious demographic shift towards older age groups. The median age of China’s population has increased massively from about 19 years in 1970 to 37 years in 2015 and is projected to rise continuously until 2070. In 2010, approximately 12 percent of the Chinese were 60 years and older, a figure that is forecast to rise as high as 36 percent by 2060. This shift in demographic development will increase social and elderly support expenditure of the society as a whole. One measure for this social imbalance is the old-age dependency ratio, measuring the relationship between economic dependent older age groups and the working-age population. The old-age dependency ratio in China is expected to soar to 53 percent in 2060, implying that by then one working-age person will have to support one elderly person. For more information on demographic development in China, take a look at our Statista dossiers on population and aging population in China.

Number of births per year in China from 2009 to 2019

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Release date

February 2020



Survey time period

2009 to 2019

Supplementary notes

Figures for earlier years have been taken from previous publications.

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Statistics on "Population in China"

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