China’s middle class is challenging the country’s one-child policy, with an increasing number of rich people having two or more children.
In China’s cities, the fines for having a second child can run up to 200,000 yuan (£20,000). The payment is intended to cover the schooling and healthcare costs of additional children.
However, wealthy parents are now either paying the fines outright, finding a way around them, or travelling to Hong Kong where no permit is needed, according to the government.
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Between 2001 and 2008, nearly 78,000 babies were born in Hong Kong to parents registered as living on the mainland.
There have also been thousands of cases of government officials circumventing the policy in order to have more children.
Zhang Weiqing, the former director of the State Family Planning Commission, the office in charge of implementing the one-child policy, told the China Daily newspaper that there is now a huge shadow over the policy, and growing resentment from poorer families.