Chinese men may soon find it difficult to get a life partner amid a serious gender imbalance as marriageable males will outnumber marriageable females by 24 million in 2020.
There is currently a serious gender imbalance among the population below the age of 19 in China, and the country's marriageable men will outnumber marriageable women by 24 million in 2020, according to the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
According to the "2010 Social Blue Book" released by Academy, it is estimated that up to 10 million marriageable men will find it difficult to find a life partner.
"China's highly imbalanced sex ratio at birth has lasted for more than 20 years and the cumulative effects have already emerged," said Yuan Xin, a professor from the Institute of Population and Development under Nankai University.
The balanced sex ratio is the law of natural evolution, but the imbalanced sex ratio in China has already become a major "obstinate disease" of society.
"During a period as short as 20 years, the regions with highly imbalanced sex ratios have rapidly expanded from eastern to western China, and from the countryside to cities, and cover almost the entire country," Yuan was quoted as saying by the People's Daily Online.
In 1982, the highly imbalanced sex ratio was seen in only 18 provinces, but by 2005 it has spread to all of the provincial-level regions except for Tibet.
The direct impact of a long-term imbalanced sex ratio at birth is the emergence of "gradient marriage squeeze," it said.
Tian Xueyuan, deputy president of China Population Research Institute, said that it is estimated males outnumber females by more than 23.8 million at and below the age of 19.
Over the next 20 years, males at the threshold of the marriage will outnumber females by 1.2 million per year on average. Given the shortage of marriageable females at the same age, males will find wives among the females at the lower age, the report said.