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Expert Insights on Total Fertility Rate

Understanding Total Fertility Rate (TFR)

The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) is a crucial indicator of a population’s fertility level. It represents the average number of children a woman would have over her lifetime under current age-specific fertility rates. TFR varies globally, from as low as 0.72 in South Korea to as high as 6.73 in Niger.

Factors Influencing TFR

Several factors influence TFR, such as economic development, education, access to contraceptives, female employment rates, and cultural norms. Developed countries typically have lower fertility rates due to greater wealth, education, and urbanization.

Impact of Human Development on TFR

Higher Human Development Index (HDI) and per capita GDP are inversely correlated with TFR. Wealthier countries tend to have lower fertility rates. This demographic-economic paradox challenges the traditional notion that greater means should lead to more offspring.

Projections and Trends

Global TFR has been declining since the 1960s and is projected to reach below-replacement levels by 2100. Regions like Africa and parts of Asia still have higher TFRs, while countries in Europe and East Asia face lowest-low fertility rates.

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