Fertility in Portugal “lowest in Europe”

The World Bank has concluded what statisticians in Portugal already knew: national fertility rates are the lowest in Europe, and globally there are only five countries with a worse record for newborns: Bosnia, Macau, Singapore, South Korea and Hong Kong.

Cyprus is the only country where birth rates have plummeted even more rapidly than in Portugal, while the European tendency as a whole, says the new study, has risen.

France, for example, has seen an 819,000 increase on figures since 2001, and it also boasts the highest number of babies born per mother (2.01).

But Eurostat has stressed that to renew populations, Europe needs a global rate of 2.1 – and at the moment it only has 1.58.