Taiwan low birth rates


Headline is South Koreans will go extinct in 2750 if they don’t have more babies

Taiwan comes in at number 3 behind S. Korea and Macau for lowest fertility rates. Obviously not “new” news as we have known about Taiwan’s declining birth rates for many yrs now. As a mid-30s man I have no urge to have kids and cannot really explain why. (my mom says it’s selfishness—haha, only child problem) It appears economic and gender equality changes have created a new generation of individuals that don’t want to be parents.

Obviously more children are needed to keep an economy stable. but I wonder what can be done? Japan has created more benefits for those who have kids. Should we create even more “benefits” for people who are willing to have kids? And a much crazier example-- should we “tax” those who don’t have kids by 40 yo (a joke)?

Anyone want to jump in with suggestions or why they have decided not to have children?

  1. Extrapolation is hazardous, especially in view of the massive social changes likely to occur between now and the year 2750.

  2. The global human population is already dangerously high, so we should celebrate demographic collapses, notwithstanding their short-term economic consequences. In any case, an economy based on continual expansion is doomed to eventual collapse.

  3. How important is it that “Korea” continue to exist forever? Group identities continually evolve, and nation-states are a fairly recent phenomenon.

  4. It is hard to feel sorry for Taiwan, which can have as many immigrants as it wants to let in, but prefers to lament the dearth of native Chinese babies.


These “predictions” are all complete bollocks, simply because it’s hard to predict any trend that’s inherently exponential. Birthrates go up, they go down. Right now at this moment, a slowdown in birth rates is exactly what Taiwan needs (and the world in general, for that matter).

There’s also no such thing as economic stability. Yes, later on there will be a lot more old people than young people. Too bad - we’ll have to figure out a way to deal with it. Is it really that hard to provide food and housing for pensioners? Or is it just that TPTB need to convince us that it is, so that the rest of us will keep our noses to the grindstone? Desperately trying to crank out more babies - who will themselves grow old and need looking after - is not the answer.


How can a person think about having a child with the prohibitive housing prices in Taiwan and high unemployment rates ? Besides there is no free child care & education in Taiwan, you pay for everything. Many kids can’t go to college because the parents can’t afford to pay for it. Even the national colleges here charge some tuition. Besides that, a student needs to pay food and board. Colleges are accepting foreign students just to keep their necks up. And many couples are divorcing quickly nowadays. Having a kid just add more load to a couple.


They’re not even really lamenting. What’s the government doing to promote children? NT$20,000 for the second child born in some counties. Great, how many months of diapers and formula can that support?

Growth and rising salaries = babies. Stagnation = no babies. It’s very simple. My wife and I are not thinking about kids right now because we can’t afford it. (“Nobody’s ever ready.” Yeah, yeah, but we’re really really not ready. A raise would help.)


Kids are a blessing. I mean it.
But forget about living cheap unless you move out to the boondocks and cook your own food.


It’s only $3,000 per kid in Chiayi. How can the government possibly see that as an incentive? We’re stopping at two kids. I’d love to have more, but it’s just stupidly expensive.


Malthus was wrong 200 years ago, and he’s still wrong today. Problem is, the dim bulbs in journalism never got the memo. It’s always some scaremongering story about population explosion or collapse: if the current demographic trend continues at the same rate, by the year blah blah blah, the population will blah blah blah. But these trends don’t happen in a vacuum, and the rates always adjust in response to the availability of resources. The only vacuum is between the journos’ ears.


It’s only $3,000 per kid in Jiayi. How can the government possibly see that as an incentive? We’re stopping at two kids. I’d love to have more, but it’s just stupidly expensive.[/quote]

Where Im from in Europe workers and employers pay pretty high tax rates.
However there is child benefit that runs to something 6,400 ntd per mth per kd and school (proper well funded public school with qualified teachers and only a small surcharge) starts from 4 years old not 6 or 7 like here. Poor kids also get subsidized for everything.

Here you have to plug that gap ourself with your own funds which costs 15k per kid in an average place in a kindergarten except for the really crappy state kindergartens.

In some European countries they have decent subsidized preschools and crèches like France and Sweden.

Taiwan’s policies are actually complete shit but they think they have got better! Yes they got a tiny bit better but not even in the same race with many other countries. This is the reason why they are falling behind.


Don’t they pay people in Sweden to go to college?

Which was the Scandinavian country that gives newborns a carton box with all the necessary stuffs, and what people love is the box which is used traditionally as baby’s bed?

ROC gummit is out of money, because most industries moved out and the ones that did not threaten to leave if anyone charges them taxes/holds them accountable for their mistakes/looks at them funny. And salarymen/women do not earn enough to make tax collection substantial, not to mention their bosses and everyone else does their best to underreport/underpay. hence, no resources to invest, they say, in such measures, but yes, money goes to pet projects and other politically inclined, short term publicity stunts. At least, foreign students scholarships are not that much money, nor is the ROC bleeding out finds in diplomatic warfare as bad as before. Still, the cost of living, the unhealthy working conditions -12 hour shifts or more- and the hopelessness due to a bleak future outlook does impair reproductive abilities.

Me? I’d love to produce more Taiwanese… when family law changes and foreign women -not just from US or Europe- get a fair shot at their kids custody in case of trouble. Which given women rights for locals… will be a while.


In addition to the bad economy, many women that are graduating from colleges don’t want to stay at home and mother the kids. Women complain way too much about their biological clock ticking, but once the kid comes into the picture, they disappear to the offices, they dump the child rearing burden to their parents or parents-in-law or nannies or husbands. They want to have kids but don’t want the child to change their lifestyles before kids. So one more con reason against having kids.


All the money is going to go to civil servant pensions in the next 10 years, to raise old people not young people.

These civil servant and military pension funds are not self funded but have been guaranteed by the ROC government, regular citizen pensions have no guarantee.


Malthus was more or less right - he just failed to predict a couple of game-changing technological developments in The West (principally, the use of energy slaves, and the Haber-Bosch process). Things don’t always adjust - we just got lucky. The other 70%+ of the planet are still firmly in Malthusian territory. If you want to see a textbook example of what happens when breeding rate outstrips food production, go to the Philippines or Bangladesh. And remember the planet IS finite. It has a certain carrying capacity and we’ve already exceeded it. The technological innovations that (presently) keep us alive are transient, stopgap measures that are already starting to fail.

All things considered, too few kids is better than too many.

That’s awesome. It’s like getting a kitten :slight_smile:



All things considered, too few kids is better than too many.[/quote]

But but but the world needs MY kids because they will be clever and special and keryute, just like me, no? :ponder:


No, your kids will be obstreperous and mean, and will throw toys at passersby.


Hmm. Well, yes. Just like their mama. But the world NEEDS my calf because I’m special and important and my genetic material would benefit humanity because I would pass on my unique genius and philosophy, shining like a beacon into the future. It’s my responsibility to DNA-Xerox the wonder that is Ermintrude, no?


I know what you’re saying. Dullards seem to think they’re doing everyone a huge favour by spawning dozens of other dullards, and the world at large should praise and support their fecklessness. Result: Big Brother, The X Factor, and American tourists called “Cutter” and “Dijon”.

You don’t have any designs on Rocket, by any chance? That would be a genetic disaster.


Can’t see the pics on work comp.

Don’t be perverted. He’s … Canadian, isn’t he?


That’d be cloning, wouldn’t it? Not quite as fun as having kids, unless of course you’ve got a thing for mouth swabs.


[quote=“headhonchoII”]All the money is going to go to civil servant pensions in the next 10 years, to raise old people not young people.

These civil servant and military pension funds are not self funded but have been guaranteed by the ROC government, regular citizen pensions have no guarantee.[/quote]

And the highest paid of those civil servants are already residing in China… sigh