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Most Chinese want 'a foreign wife'
From correspondents in Beijing
March 31, 2005
From: Agence France-Presse
NEARLY 63 per cent of Chinese citizens would like to marry a foreigner, according to a new survey.
The survey of contemporary Chinese attitudes towards international marriage, by Chinese web portal sina.com, showed 62.7 per cent of the 10,381 people questioned favoured marrying someone other than a fellow citizen.
It did not set out the reasons why, although 12.78 per cent of respondents said they felt Chinese "worshipped" foreigners and their lifestyle.
About 75 per cent said cultural differences would be their biggest concern when considering such a marriage.
"Every international marriage is challenged by cultural and language differences," Chen Guangyao, an official with the Ministry of Civil Affairs, was cited as saying by the Beijing Morning Post.
"Whether it succeeds or not depends to what extent the bride and groom are ready to handle these differences."
International marriages in China have experienced two distinct periods.
In the 1980s and 1990s some Chinese people married primarily for convenience, either to get visas for overseas studies or to be able to move to a foreign country.
But since the turn of the century, such marriages were more likely to be based on love, Chen said.
Marrying a foreigner was no guarantee of long-lasting happiness, said the paper, citing a separate survey showing that international marriages tend to have high divorce rates.