A shocking study has found that the pressures people feel in China and India to produce boys and not girls has lead to a spike in gender-based pregnancy terminations.
Believe it or not, there are 23.1 million “missing” females in the world as a result of people doing it because the child would have been born female.
10.6 million of the so-called “missing” females are in India, and 11.9 million of them are in India.
The Singaporean researchers who provided the study say that the added pressure of the single-child policy in China, and the desire of parents to have a boy child compounded the problem even further.
The five-year study got information from 202 countries around the world, and it included countries where boys are favored over girls at some point in their history.
The study found that the global gender ratio shifted up to 118:100 in favor of males, thanks to the favoritism of male children. This has even further made a difference to the already existing quirk of nature in which for every 200 births, 105 will likely be male.
This bias remains a mystery to scientists to date, but it has been speculated that it exists to balance out the fact that women live longer than men.
The study was published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and it gathered data from birth records, census information, and survey responses. According to the study, China peaked this gender favoritism in 2005, and repercussions are now beginning to be felt, as the country has a lack of women reaching reproductive age.
The issue is likely to be worsened in the future, warn the researchers.