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China to end one-child policy in 2019

China is considering ending the limits it sets on the number of children a family can have, Bloomberg reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

China’s population is aging rapidly, with the number of births falling by 3.5 per cent to 17.23 million in 2017 in spite of the country’s decision in late 2015 to relax the controversial “one-child” policy and allow couples to have a second child.

“The State Council, or cabinet, has commissioned research on ending the country’s birth limits on a nationwide basis.

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A decision could be made in the last quarter of this year or in 2019,’’ the Bloomberg report said.

China implemented its one-child policy in the 1970s to limit population growth, but authorities are concerned that a dwindling workforce will not be able to support an increasingly aging population.

The one-child policy also contributed to a sharp gender imbalance, with 32.66 million more males than females at the end of 2017.

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