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Over 53,000 Beijing couples opt for second child

Beijing:Over 53,000 couples in the Chinese capital of Beijing have applied for a second child since the city changed its family planning policy in 2014, the media reported.

A total of 53,034 couples in Beijing submitted applications by the end of September of which 48,392 couples received approval. Of the potential mothers, 57 percent were aged between 31 and 35 years old, the Global Times reported on Sunday.

China introduced its family planning policy in the late 1970s to rein in population growth by limiting most urban couples to one child and most rural couples to two, allowing the birth of a second child if the first child was a girl.

A policy change at the end of 2013 has allowed couples all across the country to have a second child if either parent is an only child.

Beijing, with a population in excess of 20 million, estimated that the policy would increase the number of couples having two children by more than 270,000, with around 54,200 additional births annually until 2019, when the figure will peak and begin to decrease.