The marriage rate, the ratio of registered marriages to China’s total population in a year, has been dropping over the past six years, Chinanews.com reported on April 2.
The marriage rate was 7.2 percent in 2018, the lowest since 2013’s 9.9 percent. Shanghai and Zhejiang province saw the lowest marriage rates, at 4.4 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively.
The declining marriage rate is related to the fact that the lifestyle choices of young adults in China are changing. More people no longer think of marriage as a necessity, and many choose to enjoy singledom for longer.
Yang Le (not her real name), a woman in her 30s, said she doesn’t feel anxious about remaining unmarried. Yang, who earns a considerable monthly salary and doesn’t have to pay for home loans, said she is currently satisfied with her life.
A report released by the Ministry of Civil Affairs indicated that more people are choosing to get married later. In 2017, about 36.9 percent of men and women entering into their first marriage were between 25 and 29 years old.
The declining marriage rate is also closely correlated to the rising costs faced by married couples, especially the staggeringly high housing prices in some big cities and the increasing costs of childcare.
Chinese parents spent a total of 1.9 trillion yuan on the education of their children in the first school semester of 2017, which accounted for 2.48 percent of national GDP in 2016.