04 Feb '11, 10pm

More babies, but was it the bonus?

The rabbit has a charming face: Its private life is a disgrace. I really dare not name to you The awful things that rabbits do. - Anonymous There has always been something snigger-worthy about bunny fertility. Not that I'm looking askance at the Chinese Rabbit, being born in that (surely) auspicious Year myself. In Australia, a land where farmers have had their share of rabbit problems, human procreation rates have been rising. Its Total Fertility Rate (TFR) is 1.9, much higher than it was in 2001, when it sank to about 1.7. As the Chinese Year of the Rabbit begins, can Singapore, facing its lowest-ever TFR of 1.16, learn from the land Down Under? Like Singapore, Australia has a Baby Bonus scheme. Originally paid at A$3,000 ($3,900) for new births, it has increased over the years to just over A$5,000, and it is means tested. The country's then-Treasurer Peter Costello laun...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/World/EDC110205-0000138/More-b...

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