Divorces wth Foreigners Up in Shanghai

Update:25 Mar 2007

There was a sharp increase in the number of international divorces in Shanghai last year. A total of 355 marriages involving a foreigner were dissolved in the city in 2006, according to Wenhui Daily.

A survey shows that long-term separation was the main factor for the divorces. Even though modern communication has become increasingly convenient, it still cannot fill the inner loneliness of separated marriage partners.

Among the number of divorces, Sino-Japanese marriages topped the list, followed by Sino-American and Sino-Australian couples. Lack of common culture and differences in language, customs, traditions and religious beliefs were also cited as obstacles for international marriages.

It has become increasingly common for Chinese citizens to marry foreigners in Shanghai. There are now about 100,000 foreigners based in Shanghai. Figures show nearly 3,000 Shanghai residents married people from 55 different overseas countries and regions, up 22.97 percent from the previous year.

Shu Xin, a member of China's Committee of Marriage and Family Affairs, said some Shanghai women regard marriage as a chance to have a better life or go abroad.

They do not have a comprehensive knowledge about living overseas or their husbands' actual situations. Once they discover reality doesn't meet their expectations, they become depressed.

According to experts, reducing the divorce rate not only requires improving social openness and the acceptance of different cultures, internationalization and social attitudes. It also requires the partners' mutual understanding, tolerance and respect.


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