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New Zealand birthrate slowly declining

May 21st, 2014 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

THE NUMBER of babies being born in New Zealand has dropped slowly over the past five years.

In 2013 there were 58,717 live registered births in a population of 4.5 million people. This meant new-borns made up 1.3% of the population.

This compares with 2008 when there were 64,340 live registered births in a population of 4.3 million (1.5% of the population).

The highest number of births ever recorded in a 12 month period was in 1961 when 65,390 births were registered in New Zealand.

At this point the population was 2.5 million, so the new babies made up 2.6% of the population at the time.

Why the decline in birth rate?

Lesley Dixon, Midwifery Advisor for the New Zealand College of Midwives says there has been an increasing number of women deciding to wait to get pregnant.

“A lot of women have decided to have a career before having children, they focus on their own work and education and get more settled in life before starting a family,” she says.

It is possible that the declining birth numbers have something to do with New Zealand women waiting until later in life to have children.

The average age of women having a baby over the last five years has remained at 30 years old.

Although the table below looks dramatic, birth rates in New Zealand have remained stable at around 1.4% of the population over the last five years.

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