Ireland had highest EU fertility rate in 2007


IRELAND HAD the highest fertility rate in the European Union in 2007, according to new data published by the Central Statistics Office.

Women in Ireland had an average of 2.05 children in that year, compared to 1.98 in France and 1.92 in Britain.

In Poland, which was ranked lowest in terms of fertility rates in the EU during 2007, there were just 1.31 children per woman.

A value of 2.1 is generally considered to be the level at which the population would replace itself in the long run, ignoring migration.

The latest figures show that 71,389 births were recorded in Ireland during 2007, an increase of 5,964 on the preceding year and the highest number of births recorded for a single year since 1981.

The birth rate in 2007 was 16.5 per 1,000 of the population.

One-third of all births in 2007 were outside of marriage. For women having their first child, almost 44 per cent of births were to mothers who were not married. This figure decreases to 28 per cent of second children born outside marriage, and 22 per cent of third children.

The estimated population in April 2007 was 4,339,000, which comprised 2,171,100 males and 2,167,900 females.

According to the data there were 28,117 deaths recorded in 2007, a decrease of 371 on the previous year.

The death rate was 6.5 per 1,000 of the population compared with 6.7 per 1,000 in 2006.

The Irish standardised death rate in 2007 was 6.01 per 1,000 of population for Ireland, which is slightly below the EU 27 rate of 6.2. More than three in every four deaths recorded were from either diseases of the circulatory system, neoplasms or diseases of the respiratory system.

Deaths due to external causes of injury and poisoning amounted to 1,759 or 6 per cent of all deaths. In addition, there were 230 deaths of infants, under one year in 2007.