Published 14:46 March 30, 2018
Updated 08:04 April 2, 2018
The economy with the worst demographic crisis in the G7 is recording the biggest fertility boom in 45 years.
Data released by Germany’s Federal Statistics Office on March 29 said the world’s fourth-largest economy saw a surge of 800,000 in births in 2017, which is a 7% rise year-on-year, or a rise from 1.5 to 1.59 births per woman.
Traditionally, women of foreign citizenship have more children than women of German origin.
Germany has been among the European states with an acute demographic stagnation problem. The UN projects that in a decade from now the German median age will be 50 or higher. That is despite sustained immigration. Of all the 27 European Union states, Germany has over 10 million inhabitants of migrant origin or 12% of its population; most of which are from Turkey, Russia, Poland, Italy, and Greece.
Demographically, Spain, Italy, Portugal, and Greece are in a worse position, followed closely by Poland, Bosnia, and Croatia.
Although the population across Europe is improving, the UK, France, Ireland, and Scandinavia which is often attributed to the highly regarded maternity benefits in those countries. Germany has tried to emulate the Scandinavian systems by boosting spending on child care benefits, which have surged by two-thirds in recent years.
Child care has largely been credited for the impressive improvement of fertility rates in France. Germany has also extended childbearing allowances to fathers, following the Swedish model, which has shown to be particularly significant after the birth of a second child.