is considering extending hukou, or household registration, to 13 million
unregistered citizens, according to the Ministry of Public Security.
Minister of Public Security Guo Shengkun presided over a meeting on
Saturday to discuss the issue.Registration is a fundamental right for
all citizens that is endorsed by the constitution and the law, according
to the meeting.
According to the National Population Census in 2010, there are 13
million unregistered people nationwide, accounting for 1 percent of the
Without a hukou, a person is denied access to public education,
reimbursement for healthcare costs and other welfare benefits.Parents
who were unable to have more than one child under the old family
planning policy, cannot register their children unless they pay a
significant sum of money.
More than 60 percent of China’s unregistered people are in this
category, according to research in 2014 by the Institute of Social
Development at the National Development and Reform Commission.Other
unregistered people include abandoned children, children born out of
wedlock and those whose documents are missing.
The research found that unregistered people tend to lack a sense of
personal security, as they are excluded from the social security system.
Without legal documents that identify them, unregistered people cannot
travel long distances easily, which restricts population mobility, the
Social instability increases and social inequalities escalate if some
people are excluded from the hukou system, the ministry said during
The ministry declared its intention to help unregistered people obtain
proper recognition and protect every citizens’ right to hukou.
Since the Third Plenum of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist
Party of China in 2013, the top leadership has issued several documents
on hukou reform, signaling a determination to reform the system.