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Premarital sex prevalent: survey
( 2003-10-09 10:30) (Xinhua)

Most would-be husbands and wives in China have had sex before they officially apply for a marriage certificate, according to a research report of the China Family Planning Association.

The report released by the association here Wednesday cited statistics from premarital physical examinations, a prerequisite for obtaining a marriage certificate in China until a week ago.

According to the report, the ratio of premarital sex varied from region to region, ranging from the lowest 44 percent to the highest 90.75 percent. The bulk of the regions are in the 60 percent to 70 percent bracket.

The research project was undertaken by the association under an international cooperation program on the health of young people. It analyzed 196 research reports on the subject done from 1990 to 2000.

Statistics from the association also show that since 1980, the ratio of young people who don't care about premarital sex has risen markedly. At present, one fifth to one third of young people hold the view that sex is private affair that has nothing to do with other people and society.

An official with the association said the sex issue of China's young people hasn't received due attention yet. Much work still needs to be done.

"Knowledge, attitudes, capability and behavior of the unwed towards sex is still outside the national survey of population and health. This isn't good for making policies and launching programs on sex health," said Gu Baochang, deputy executive director of the association.

As China opens to the outside world, Western values have entered China along with investments. Compared with the 1970s whensex is still considered a taboo to the general public, Chinese people now tend to adopt more liberal attitudes towards sex.

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