The North Lakes – Mango Hill area is among the SEQ suburbs that registered the highest numbers of births in 2017 and one of the highest in terms of percentage of increase from 2011, the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics report revealed.
North Lakes – Mango Hill area delivered 527 babies in 2017, an increase of 43.98 percent from 2011 and almost 1 percent from 2016. The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics report shows that despite the increase in number of births, fertility rate was down to 2.03 from 2.17 in 2011 and 2.10 in 2016.
Upper Coomera – Willow Vale recorded the highest number of births with 553, an 8.4 percent increase from 2011; TFR was also down from 2.48 in 2011 to 2.18 in 2017. The suburb of Pimpama in the northern part of Gold Coast, on the other hand, recorded a total of 374 births, which equates to a 466 percent jump from 2011 and 87.9 percent increase from 2016.
Declining Total Fertility Rate and Shift Towards Late Child Bearing
Globally, the average fertility rate is just under 2.5 per woman, which is already about half of what the global average was 50 years ago, according to the Our World in Data website. Furthermore, up to 1965, the global average fertility rate was about 5 children per woman and has since declined rapidly with some countries taking less than 25 years to fall from six to less than three children per woman.
Whilst reasons for the accelerating decline in fertility rate varies from country to country, the two influential factors for many of these places, according to Our World in Data — Max Roser’s study, are women’s empowerment and improved well-being and status of children. Apart from that, advancements in technology, economic changes, changing norms in society, and family planning, also play a role in the declining fertility rate.
To replace the mother and her partner, the current TFR required in Australia is around 2.10 babies per woman, the ABS report said. In 2017, there were a total of 61,158 births recorded in Queensland with a total fertility rate of 1.82, down from TFR of 2.09 recorded in 2011 and 1.86 in 2016. The national total fertility rate in 2017 was 1.74 down from 1.79 in 2016.
Among QLD LGAs, Brisbane recorded the most number of births with 14,598 (TFR 1.51), followed by Gold Coast 6,958 (TFR 1.67), Moreton Bay 5,539 (1.95), Logan 4,960 (TFR 2.15), and Ipswich 3,351 (TFR 2.15).
Of the total 309,142 births in Australia, 77.60 percent came from New South Wales, Victoria, and Queensland. The report showed that the fertility rate of women 35 and over is rising, a stark contrast to other age groups which are seen to be falling.
For women aged 35-39, fertility rate has doubled in the past 30 years, whilst women aged 40-44 has tripled. Conversely, teenage fertility was down by almost 50 percent. However, women aged 30-34 still has the highest fertility rate with 25-29 age group coming in second.
The shift towards late childbearing, which contributed greatly to the rise in the median age of mothers, has resulted in the overall falling fertility rate in Australia, ABS Director of Demography — Anthony Grubb said.