17 Jan '11, 10pm

Singapore's fertility rate hits record low of 1.16 (via ST iPhone App)

SINGAPORE'S baby shortfall worsened last year when the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) sank to a historic low of 1.16. That is down from 1.22 in 2009, and way below the replacement level of 2.1. Speaking at an Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) conference on Monday, Deputy Prime Minister Wong Kan Seng identified the low TFR, which is a preliminary estimate, as the key hurdle to Singapore achieving a 'sustainable population'. Such a population, he said, has a strong citizen core, a stable ethnic mix, enough manpower for economic growth, and mitigates the impact of ageing. TFR measures the average number of children that a woman would bear in her lifetime, in this case, a woman resident in Singapore. On the uphill task of persuading Singapore residents to have more children, Mr Wong said: 'The going is hard, but we have not given up. We will continue to support couples' decisions ...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Singapore/Story/...

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