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Material goods blamed for marital strife

[ 2010-11-26 11:02]     字号 [] [] []  
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A majority of Chinese people feel unsure about marriage, as the country's divorce rate is almost on par with its economic growth rate, a survey has found.

According to an online survey released on Thursday by China Youth Daily, 78 percent out of 2,714 respondents said they feel unsure about marriage.

A section of the survey that asked whether people care too much about the material assets in a marriage was cited by 63 percent of the respondents as the chief cause of insecurity in marriage.

Statistics from the Ministry of Civil Affairs show that about 2.47 million couples divorced in China in 2009, a rise of almost 9 percent from the previous year.

"People feel insecure in marriage because it is overburdened nowadays. It is expected to offer too many things besides affection, such as wealth, social status and human resources," said Ma Yinan, a professor at Peking University.

The Supreme People's Court made public a draft of judicial interpretations of the marriage law on Nov 16 to solicit opinions.

A controversial section of the draft suggests that once a marriage ends in divorce, the pre-marital property is to be recognized as the buyer's personal assets, instead of a couple's common wealth.

The draft also states that the party who makes the down payment for a residence and registers it in his or her name prior to marriage is to be recognized as the owner of the property if the marriage ends in divorce.

The previous clause in the law dictated that a house, which is traditionally bought by the bridegroom before the marriage, is regarded as the couple's mutual property and appraised for its value on divorce.

In response to the proposed changes in the draft, more than 60 percent of the netizens polled in the survey supported this change in the marriage law, while 21 percent were opposed to it.


(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Material goods blamed for marital strife

About the broadcaster:

Material goods blamed for marital strife

Nelly Min is an editor at China Daily with more than 10 years of experience as a newspaper editor and photographer. She has worked at major newspapers in the U.S., including the Los Angeles Times and the Detroit Free Press. She is also fluent in Korean.