Fertility Rate By Country 2019

The vast majority of the countries in the world with the highest fertility rates are in Africa, with Niger topping the list at 7.153 children per woman, followed by Somalia at 6.123 children per woman. The Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali and Chad follow at 5.963, 5.922 and 5.797 children per woman, respectively. The North African country of Tunisia has the lowest fertility rate on the continent at 2.147 children per woman – a figure that puts it roughly in the middle of the two hundred countries listed.

The Southeast Asian island nation of Timor-Leste also makes it into the top ten, with a fertility rate of 5.337 children per woman, while other island nations, such as Sao Tome and Principe (4.361 children per woman) and the Solomon Islands (3.77 children per woman) are also within the top fifty countries with the highest fertility rates. In Europe, Ireland and France have the highest fertility rates (at 1.98 and 1.852 children per woman), while the United States averages 1.886 children per woman.

Two of the most densely populated countries in the world – China and India – have fertility rates on the lower end of the scale. At 2.303 children per woman, India ranks at number 94 on the list, while China is much lower at 1.635 children per woman. However, both of these figures are likely to be affected by government policies and cultural expectations around reproduction in these countries. Taiwan has the lowest fertility rate in the world at 1.218 children per woman, closely followed by Moldova and Portugal, where there are, on average, 1.23 and 1.241 children per woman.

The fertility rate of a country is a figure that reflects the number of children a woman would give birth to under two conditions: the woman were to experience age-specific fertility rates and if the woman were to survive through her reproductive child-bearing years. Statistically, this means ages 15 to 44, or in some cases, ages 15 to 49.

The fertility rate isn’t a measure of how many children each woman in a specific area has. Instead, it’s based on the average number that a woman could potentially have. This is also known as “total fertility rate.”

The highest fertility rates are found in countries located in Africa. Based on World Bank data from 2017, the highest fertility rate can be found in Niger, where the rate is 7.2. Somalia has the next highest fertility rate of 6.2. The Democratic Republic of Congo comes in third place with a fertility rate of 6.0.

Other nations with high fertility rates include:

All fertility rates on the list above are at or above 5.0.

Looking at the data from another angle, the countries and dependencies with the lowest fertility rates are the Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, and Puerto Rico, each of which have a fertility rate of 1.1. Singapore and Moldova also have low rates at just 1.2.

Other nations with low fertility rates are:

These nations are just a few that fall below the worldwide fertility rate of 2.4.

Nigeria ranks number 8 in the world, with a fertility rate of 5.4 children per woman. The relatively high fertility rate in Nigeria, according to a paper published by the UN, can be attributed to a low use of contraception, early and universal marriage, the high child mortality rate, early child bearing and child bearing within much of the reproductive life span, and high social values placed on child bearing. Nigeria’s fertility rate has decreased from 6.35 in 1960 to 5.4 in 2019.

The fertility rate in Europe is relatively low, with no country above 2.0 and has declined in recent years. There are several factors that could drive this trend, including socioeconomic incentives to delay child bearing, a decline in the desired number of children, lack of child care and changing gender roles. The highest fertility rate is in Ireland at 1.98, and the lowest in Europe is Moldova at 1.23 The European population replacement rate is 2.1 births per woman, a fertility rate that no European country currently has.

The fertility rate in France is 1.852, and has been steadily declining the past several years. France was once known for, and proud of, having the highest fertility rates in Europe, and the decreasing fertility rate has caused concern for France. They have since prioritized incentives for having children, such as subsidized daycare, special discounts, and cash support payments to families.

Afghanistan’s fertility rate used to be one of the highest in the world at 8.0 in the 1990s. The country’s current fertility rate is 4.55; just over half of what it was in the 1990s. This is like because of more Afghan women receiving and education and getting jobs. After the Taliban was ousted from Afghanistan, NATO countries provided aid that helped fund schools, family planning services and birth control. Additionally, infant mortality rates have also plummeted.

The highest fertility rate in Europe is Ireland’s at 1.98. This rate, however, is still below the population replacement level of 2.1 births per woman. One reason for a decreasing fertility rate in Ireland is the average age of first-time mothers, which is 30.3 years old. Two possible factors that could contribute to the decreased fertility rate in Ireland are the lack of flexible work options and the high childcare costs. These factors are causing women to sacrifice making a family for their careers.

In Italy, the declining fertility rate is causing concern, as it currently sits at 1.33. The average age for first-time mothers in Italy is 31 years old, the highest in Europe. A large reason that women in Italy are not having children is because they are not financially ready to raise a child, and the government doesn’t help with the cost of childcare. The low fertility rate combined with a longer life expectancy has left Italy with a significantly older population (a median age of 45.9 years compared to Europe’s median of 42.8 years).

Although Pakistan’s fertility rate is not among the highest, at 3.55, it is still causing alarm as the country’s population has been growing at a rapid rate and depleting the country’s resources. The rate at which the population is growing has already caused the overcrowding of schools, clinics, and poor communities across Pakistan and is like attributed to a lack of family planning and birth control, among other religious and political influence.

Norway is another European country experiencing falling fertility rates, at 1.68 children per woman. An important factor in Norway for the decrease in childbirths is the increasing age for first-time mothers, which sits at an average of 29.5 years. Additionally, there are fewer larger families. This will harm Norway in the long term, as there will be fewer people of working age to pay the taxes that fund Norway’s welfare systems. Norway is exploring options to encourage childbirth, such as paying a mother in pension savings for each child born.

The worldwide fertility rate is around 2.4 children per woman. This rate is approximately half of what it was in 1950 (4.7) and more economically developed countries have lower rates, such as Australia, most of Europe and South Korea. There are three main factors that have been credited for a decrease in the global fertility rate: fewer deaths in childhood, greater access and use of contraception, and more women are getting an education and joining the workforce. The lower fertility rate can be seen as a good thing for many countries, especially those experiencing overpopulation.

The population replacement rate, the fertility rate needed to maintain a society’s population size, is 2.1 children per woman. Countries with fertilities rates below this number may experience an overall older demographic and a decrease in population size over time.

Country Total Fertility Rate Rank
Niger6.95 children per woman1
Somalia6.12 children per woman2
Dr Congo5.963 children per woman3
Mali5.922 children per woman4
Chad5.797 children per woman5
Angola5.55 children per woman6
Burundi5.45 children per woman7
Nigeria5.417 children per woman8
Gambia5.25 children per woman9
Burkina Faso5.231 children per woman10
Uganda5.01 children per woman11
Tanzania4.924 children per woman12
Mozambique4.886 children per woman13
Benin4.867 children per woman14
Central African Republic4.754 children per woman15
Guinea4.738 children per woman16
South Sudan4.736 children per woman17
Ivory Coast4.68 children per woman18
Zambia4.656 children per woman19
Senegal4.65 children per woman20
Cameroon4.603 children per woman21
Mauritania4.585 children per woman22
Afghanistan4.555 children per woman23
Equatorial Guinea4.554 children per woman24
Guinea Bissau4.51 children per woman25
Republic Of The Congo4.45 children per woman26
Solomon Islands4.435 children per woman27
Sudan4.434 children per woman28
Togo4.351 children per woman29
Sao Tome And Principe4.35 children per woman31
Liberia4.35 children per woman30
Sierra Leone4.319 children per woman32
Ethiopia4.3 children per woman33
Malawi4.25 children per woman34
Comoros4.237 children per woman35
Madagascar4.109 children per woman36
Timor Leste4.1 children per woman39
Rwanda4.1 children per woman38
Eritrea4.1 children per woman37
Gabon4 children per woman40
Samoa3.903 children per woman41
Ghana3.893 children per woman42
Yemen3.837 children per woman43
Vanuatu3.8 children per woman44
Mayotte3.729 children per woman45
Iraq3.682 children per woman46
Palestine3.668 children per woman47
Zimbabwe3.626 children per woman48
Tajikistan3.607 children per woman49
Papua New Guinea3.588 children per woman50
Kiribati3.584 children per woman51
Tonga3.576 children per woman52
Pakistan3.55 children per woman53
Kenya3.52 children per woman54
Namibia3.415 children per woman55
French Guiana3.36 children per woman56
Egypt3.33 children per woman57
Lesotho3.164 children per woman58
Micronesia3.076 children per woman59
Algeria3.05 children per woman60
Israel3.044 children per woman61
Swaziland3.026 children per woman62
Kyrgyzstan3 children per woman63
Haiti2.96 children per woman64
Oman2.93 children per woman65
Mongolia2.902 children per woman66
Guatemala2.899 children per woman67
Botswana2.894 children per woman68
Syria2.84 children per woman69
Fiji2.787 children per woman70
Turkmenistan2.785 children per woman71
Jordan2.772 children per woman72
Kazakhstan2.764 children per woman73
Djibouti2.758 children per woman74
Bolivia2.75 children per woman75
Laos2.7 children per woman76
Philippines2.58 children per woman77
Cambodia2.524 children per woman78
Honduras2.487 children per woman79
Guyana2.473 children per woman80
Panama2.469 children per woman81
Seychelles2.46 children per woman82
Paraguay2.446 children per woman83
Ecuador2.44 children per woman84
Uzbekistan2.43 children per woman86
Suriname2.43 children per woman85
Nicaragua2.42 children per woman88
Morocco2.42 children per woman87
Western Sahara2.415 children per woman89
South Africa2.414 children per woman90
Dominican Republic2.36 children per woman91
Saudi Arabia2.34 children per woman92
Indonesia2.32 children per woman94
Belize2.32 children per woman93
Guam2.319 children per woman95
Cape Verde2.289 children per woman96
Venezuela2.283 children per woman97
Reunion2.273 children per woman98
Peru2.27 children per woman99
Argentina2.268 children per woman100
Libya2.25 children per woman101
India2.24 children per woman102
Sri Lanka2.21 children per woman103
Tunisia2.2 children per woman104
Myanmar2.17 children per woman106
Guadeloupe2.17 children per woman105
Iran2.15 children per woman107
Mexico2.14 children per woman108
Kuwait2.1 children per woman109
Lebanon2.09 children per woman110
Azerbaijan2.083 children per woman111
Turkey2.08 children per woman112
Grenada2.073 children per woman113
Georgia2.062 children per woman114
Vietnam2.056 children per woman115
El Salvador2.053 children per woman116
Bangladesh2.052 children per woman117
United States Virgin Islands2.046 children per woman118
Malaysia2.01 children per woman119
Bhutan2 children per woman121
Antigua And Barbuda2 children per woman120
Bahrain1.998 children per woman122
Jamaica1.991 children per woman123
Uruguay1.98 children per woman124
New Caledonia1.97 children per woman125
French Polynesia1.95 children per woman126
Nepal1.934 children per woman127
North Korea1.91 children per woman128
Saint Vincent And The Grenadines1.902 children per woman129
New Zealand1.9 children per woman131
Aruba1.9 children per woman130
Qatar1.881 children per woman132
Martinique1.88 children per woman134
Maldives1.88 children per woman133
France1.852 children per woman135
Sweden1.85 children per woman136
Brunei1.848 children per woman137
Ireland1.841 children per woman138
Australia1.832 children per woman139
Russia1.821 children per woman140
Colombia1.82 children per woman141
United States1.776 children per woman142
Iceland1.77 children per woman143
Costa Rica1.764 children per woman144
Denmark1.762 children per woman145
Curacao1.76 children per woman147
Bahamas1.76 children per woman146
Armenia1.756 children per woman148
Montenegro1.751 children per woman149
United Kingdom1.75 children per woman150
Brazil1.74 children per woman151
Trinidad And Tobago1.73 children per woman152
Latvia1.717 children per woman153
Belgium1.715 children per woman154
Belarus1.71 children per woman155
China1.69 children per woman156
Norway1.68 children per woman157
Lithuania1.67 children per woman158
Netherlands1.66 children per woman159
Chile1.65 children per woman160
Czech Republic1.641 children per woman161
Romania1.62 children per woman164
Barbados1.62 children per woman163
Albania1.62 children per woman162
Cuba1.617 children per woman165
Slovenia1.6 children per woman166
Estonia1.588 children per woman167
Germany1.586 children per woman168
Bulgaria1.558 children per woman169
Thailand1.535 children per woman171
Switzerland1.535 children per woman170
Finland1.53 children per woman172
Austria1.529 children per woman173
Canada1.525 children per woman174
Slovakia1.502 children per woman175
Macedonia1.5 children per woman176
Hungary1.491 children per woman177
Serbia1.461 children per woman178
Malta1.45 children per woman180
Luxembourg1.45 children per woman179
Croatia1.446 children per woman181
Ukraine1.444 children per woman183
Saint Lucia1.444 children per woman182
United Arab Emirates1.42 children per woman185
Poland1.42 children per woman184
Mauritius1.389 children per woman186
Japan1.37 children per woman187
Cyprus1.337 children per woman188
Spain1.33 children per woman190
Italy1.33 children per woman189
Hong Kong1.326 children per woman191
Greece1.302 children per woman192
Portugal1.288 children per woman193
Bosnia And Herzegovina1.27 children per woman194
Moldova1.255 children per woman195
Puerto Rico1.22 children per woman196
Singapore1.209 children per woman197
Macau1.2 children per woman198
Taiwan1.15 children per woman199
South Korea1.11 children per woman200