Monday, February 10, 2014

Born in the USA: Baby or Maternity Tourism in the CNMI

ABC news recently reported an undercover story about the increasing number of Chinese nationals who are going to Saipan, the capital of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), a U.S. territory, in order to give birth to their children there. Because the CNMI is a U.S. territory, anyone born there acquires citizenship by birth. According to the report, more than 200 babies - whom the report refers to as "ABC" or "American Born Chinese"-  were born on Saipan in 2012. 

The report further explained that this type of "baby tourism" is a lucrative business that begins in China. For $27,000, those engaged in this business assist clients get tourist visas, help take care of the baby after he/she is born, and ensure that the baby obtains a Social Security card, birth certificate, and a U.S. passport. 

The link to the report is here.  Two years ago, the NYT reported that city officials in San Gabriel, CA, shut down a facility that was involved in what it referred to as "maternity tourism."  


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