Beijing's Population Declines for First Time in 20 Years

By Justine Lopez, September 22, 2017

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Earlier this year, Beijing announced plans to cap its population at 23 million by 2020. And according to a new report it looks as if the capital is starting to make progress.

In 2016, the number of official permanent residents rose by 24,000 to 21.73 million. However, the number of permanent migrants decreased by 151,000 to 8.07 million.

According to the Annual Report on Analysis of Beijing Society-Building 2017, this is the first time Beijing has experienced a population decrease since 1997.

The population cap is part of the local government’s plan to turn Beijing into a world-class capital city.

In the past year, Beijing has strictly enforced population control measures including relocating “non-essential” businesses to Hebei, shutting down hundreds of factories and closing down thousands of businesses.

From 2013 to 2016, Beijing closed 1,341 manufacturing and high-polluting companies. Nearly 400 manufacturing companies were relocated in the first half of 2017.

"Under the background of removing non-capital function, targeting the goals of social governance modernization…Beijing promotes the fine municipal management" and "improves the level of basic public services," Beijing has "achieved good performance on society-building in 2016," the report reads.

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