Singapore has one of the lowest birthrates in the world, with just 1.14 children born per woman in 2020. According to a report by the Department of Statistics, Singapore’s total fertility rate has been consistently below the replacement level of 2.1 since 1976. This means that the number of births is not enough to replace the number of deaths in the population. Additionally, the report revealed that women are delaying marriage and childbirth, leading to a smaller window of opportunity to have children.
The Reasons Behind Singapore’s Decreasing Birthrate
There are various reasons behind Singapore’s decreasing birthrate, including:
- High Cost of Living: With rising costs of housing and childcare, many Singaporeans are hesitant to start a family due to financial constraints.
- Career Priorities: Women are increasingly prioritizing their careers and delaying marriage and childbirth as a result.
- Social Norms: There is still a prevalent societal expectation that women should prioritize family over career, which can lead to difficult choices for women.
Is Reversing the Trend Possible?
- Increase Family-Friendly Policies: The government can introduce policies such as paid parental leave and affordable childcare to make it easier for Singaporeans to start a family.
- Address Societal Expectations: We can work towards breaking down societal expectations that place undue pressure on women to prioritize family over career.
- Change the Narrative: Let’s start celebrating the joys of parenthood and highlight the benefits of having children, such as companionship in old age and the continuation of family traditions.
- The Future of Singapore’s Population
Breaking Ageism Stereotypes
It’s time to break the stereotypes surrounding ageing. Older Singaporeans can still lead active and fulfilling lives. They can continue to contribute to society in meaningful ways, whether through work or volunteerism. Plus, let’s not forget the joy of spending time with grandparents and the valuable life lessons they can impart to younger generations.
It’s important to note that a decreasing birthrate can have long-term implications for Singapore’s population, such as an ageing population and a smaller workforce. However, with proper planning and support, we can create a future where Singaporeans can have both fulfilling careers and families
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