According to Bloomberg News, a paradox has emerged in China: As the country finally relaxes its one-child policy, factors like lower sperm counts, later pregnancies and other health barriers are making it harder for many to get pregnant. As a result, businesses from China to Australia, and even California are lining up to help — and profit from — the growing market of hopeful prospective parents.
In fact. Reproductive Partners has been treating patients from China for IVF, egg freezing, egg donation and surrogacy through our office in Beijing.
For decades, couples in urban China were only allowed to have one child, but the country, which is trying to boost its shrinking workforce, moved to end that policy in 2015. China’s market for IVF alone was worth $670 million in 2016 and is expected to surge to $1.5 billion in 2022, according to BIS Research.
Sperm counts (measured by the number of sperm per milliliter) dropped very significantly from 100 million in the early 1970s to as low as 20 million in 2012 in China, according to Yanzhong Huang, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations. The higher stress levels accompanying economic development, pollution, late marriage and late childbirth, smoking and alcohol use could be contributing factors, he said.
A study in central China showed that only about 18 percent of those tested had healthy enough semen to be sperm donors in 2015. That number had been much higher at 56 percent in 2001, according the study, which was published this year in the medical journal Fertility & Sterility. Many Chinese women, meanwhile, are choosing to have children later as they pursue their careers. Yet the desire to have biological children looms large, and that’s driving demand for services like IVF.
Still, Chinese patients face a number of regulatory hurdles at home. Single women, for instance, aren’t allowed to freeze their eggs in the country. Such restrictions have many patients considering trips abroad.
For information on Reproductive Partner’s China services:
Address：Suite 1507, Nanyin Plaza 15th Floor, North 3rd Ring Road No. 2, Chaoyang, Beijing
China Patients Hotline中国服务: 400 619 2158
Phone：+86 10 6410 7108