Changing Fertility Landscapes: Exploring the Reproductive Routes and Choices of Fertility Patients from China for Assisted Reproduction in Russia

Date

2021-01-11

Advisors

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

ISSN

1793-8759

Volume Title

Publisher

Springer

Type

Article

Peer reviewed

Yes

Abstract

Global reproductive landscapes and with them cross-border routes are rapidly changing. This paper examines the reproductive routes and choices of fertility travellers from China to Russia as reported by medical professionals and fertility service providers. Providing new empirical data, it raises new ethical questions on the facilitation of cross-border reproductive travel and the commercialisation of reproductive treatment. The relaxation of the one-child policy in 2014 in China, the increasing demand for ART exceeding the capacity of national fertility clinics and the difficulty of accessing treatment with donor eggs concomitant with a growing economic power of the upper–middle class are shaping the ART industry in Asia in new ways. A new development is Chinese citizens increasingly seeking ART treatment in Russia, which has a long-standing practice of ART governed by a liberal legislation. Furthermore, as China prohibits the export of gametes, Chinese fertility travellers rely on acquiring donor gametes once starting treatment abroad. Clinicians in Russia report three strategies amongst their Chinese patients: One group is using donor eggs of women of Asian appearance living in Russia or is hiring women of resembling appearance from third-party countries to donate their eggs in Russia to create resemblance in their offspring. Another group is buying white donor gametes to create Eurasian mixed children and thus ‘enhance’ their offspring. Providing novel empirical data, this article informs ethical deliberation and raises imminent questions for further research in this understudied geographic region and on cross-border reproductive treatment.

Description

The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.

Keywords

Citation

Weis, C. (2021) Changing Fertility Landscapes: Exploring the Reproductive Routes and Choices of Fertility Patients from China for Assisted Reproduction in Russia. Asian Bioethics Review,13, pp.7–22.

Rights

Research Institute

Centre for Reproduction Research (CRR)