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Giving birth overseas a fast-growing industry

2014-01-28 13:27 China Daily Web Editor: qindexing
[Photo / Provided to China Daily]

[Photo / Provided to China Daily]

Giving birth overseas is a good way for some Chinese parents who plan to migrate because in some countries their children will automatically receive the nationality of the country in which he or she is born.

The US is the main destination for pregnant Chinese women because of its nationality policy. The confinement center industry is developing in the country because Asian women have a tradition of being taken care of for one month after giving birth.

More than 10,000 pregnant women from China gave birth in the US in 2012. The number was close to 20,000 in 2013, according to a survey reported by the All American Mother Service Management Center Inc.

"Hundreds of thousands of people owe their living to the industry chain of giving birth in the US," the center said in the report.

The report also revealed that there are 175 confinement centers in the US. More than 88 percent of them are located in Los Angeles, where there are many Chinese gather and the weather is generally sunny and warm.

The number of confinement centers grew quickly between 2011 and 2012, when it became easier for Chinese to get a travel tourist visas to the US.

The cost of giving birth in the US is estimated at between 70,000 yuan ($11,573)and 130,000 yuan - not very high for rich Chinese families.

Zhang Kai, a 29-year old man living in Beijing, said he will send his pregnant wife to the US to give birth this May.

"It is not very difficult for us," said Zhang. Both he and his wife used to study in the US.

But they still have to look for a confinement center on the West Coast of the US, Zhang said, because they have no relatives there to take care of his wife.

Although the business of some agencies arranging Chinese women to give birth overseas fell after the restrictions on having a second child were revised, there is still optimism about the industry.

The client numbers of the agencies will not drop dramatically, said Bai Gang, a staff member of an agency in Beijing that helps pregnant Chinese women to give birth in the US.

"US citizenship is attractive to them if they can afford the expense of the trip," he added.

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