China’s 4th Wave of Singledom

By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D. | November 14, 2016

Just when you thought China’s population decline couldn’t go any faster, the government TV reports a new phase in Beijing’s population woes:

A new term “single economy” has appeared in the wake of the new trend.

Stats showed that a significant portion of the single population in China freely spend on luxury items, as well as on entertainment such as going to bars and karaoke parlors.

However, experts said singledom could also create problems such as low birth rates and the fast aging of the population.

Several waves of singledom have swept over the Chinese mainland during the past decades.

The first was in 1950 when China’s first marriage law, which legalized divorces soon after the People’s Republic of China was established, brought a wave of marital separations.

The second wave came when “sent-down youths,” urban youngsters who were asked by the government to leave the cities and live and work in rural areas in the late 1960s and early 1970s, were finally allowed to return to the cities in the 1970s.

The third was in the 1990s when, as a result of the Chinese economic reforms, people started to question traditional family values and their responsibilities within family units.