According to statistics of the Ministry of Civil Affairs, about 1.96 million couples have filed for a divorce in 2010. Every year, when the long Spring Festival vacation ends, many people choose to finish their marriage. From the statistic report of the nation's civil service of the four seasons between 2007 and 2010, it is discovered that the number of people filing for divorce in China continues to be in a rising trend. The Ministry of Civil Affairs has made an analysis of the progressive increase in the number of divorcing people, within the statistic report of the nation's civil service: Looking at the situation of the last five years, it is seen that number of divorcing people grows year after year, in an average growth rate of 7.65%, showing that in terms of income and personality, married man and woman in China are more and more independent, and their self identity is becoming more and more strong.
On the 8th of August 2003, the State Council issued a new edition of 'Regulations on Marriage Registration', which was put into effect on October first that year. The implementation of the new regulations simplified the formalities of marriage registration and improved the working efficiency. In that year exactly, the number of married couples divorcing began increasing progressively. In that year 1.33 million married couples got divorced, and increase of 154 thousand couples compared to the preceding year (a growth of 2.1‰ in the divorce rate).
The simplification of the registration formalities increased the number of people divorcing. Xu Anqi, a marriage expert, indicates that before 2003, in many places, couples wanting to divorce were required a written testimony from their work unit or the residents' committee. In order to protect one's privacy, many married couples had to remain formally married. In addition, in the past, going to the Ministry of Civil Affairs to file a divorce requires a month until a divorce certificate can be attained.
The simplification marriage formalities made many people willing to attend the Ministry of Civil Affairs to divorce. In the statistics' report of 2004, the Ministry of Civil Affairs similarly stresses the improvement of working efficiency brought upon by the simplification of the procedure of divorce applications.
 民政部 mín zhèng bù - Ministry of Civil Affairs.
 全国民政事业统计报告 quánguó mín zhèng shìyè tǒngjì bàogào - The statistic report of the nation's civil service - An annual report issued by the Ministry of Civil Affairs, which includes stats regarding marriage and divorce in China.
 国务院 guówùyuàn - State Council, the chief administrative authority in the PRC.
《婚姻登记条例》hūnyīn dēngjì tiáolì - 'Regulations on Marriage Registration'; revised regulations concerning marriage and divorce formalities, decided upon in the State Council 16th weekly routine meeting (August 2003), directed by premier Wen Jiabao. The new regulations at the time have weakened the governmental supervision on marriage and divorce and allowed people to choose their marital status more independently. The reguations can be read here (for an English version look here).
 名存实亡 míng cún shí wáng - 'The name exists, the substance died', here referring to couples, who remain married by name only, without maintaining a married lifestyle.