According to a study published in Global Health, a medical journal, researchers from Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah University have concluded that an in-balance of girls due to selective abortions will result in a shortage of women in several countries.
The Business Insider reports that researchers came to this conclusion after studying 3.26 million births over the past 50 years. With this initial research, they then zeroed in on 29 countries where families prefer boys to girls.
Typically, 51.22% of the babies born are male. However, their research revealed that this gap is starting to widen in several countries, due primarily to selective sex abortion.
Countries such as China and India were the hardest hit, particularly in China, where its one child policy resulted in parents aborting or abandoning female babies, until a male child arrived. This has resulted in 35 million extra males in China.
The report noted that there are 12 countries where male birth ratio has been increasing since 1971 and is expecting that the same will soon start happening in an additional 17 countries.
They concluded that by 2030 this will result in a five million fewer girls, and if the current rate continues could result in a 22 million shortfall by the end of the century.
According to the report, the lack of women available for marriage, could potentially have a destabilizing impact on society, leaving millions of frustrated single men unable to have families.
Another factor compounding the problem is polygamy, that is still a common practice in many parts of the world. Though polygamy is outlawed in Sierra Leone, a 2008 study determined that 37% of the women in that country are involved in a polygamous marriage. This has resulted in tens of thousands of men with no hope of having a family. READ: Polygamy in Sierra Leone AND Sierra Leone, Demographic and Health Survey 2008″, Statistics Sierra Leone – Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Freetown, Sierra Leone, ICF Macro Calverton, Maryland USA, July 2009, p. 84.
And this can cause societal issues. One report suggested, that the growth of the Taliban in Afghanistan is due in part to the unavailability of wives in that country, as Islam allows men to have up to four wives and unlimited concubines.
With no hope of settling down and raising a family, these single men are easily enticed into extremist organizations. READ: Polygamy in Afghanistan