Births have declined more than expected in Iran this year, local media reported quoting figures from a government statistical organization.
The Iranian Student News Agency (ISNA) Friday reported that the Statistical Center of Iran figures show births declined by 11,000 from March 21-June 20. Total number of births in that period was 270,000.
This is the second year in a row that births have significantly declined in the country. In the same period last year there were 19,000 fewer births compared with 2019.
The specific reason for the accelerated decline in births has not been mentioned, although one obvious explanation is the current economic crisis and high rate of inflation Iran faces. Prices for food have skyrocketed by 66 percent this year compared with 2020.
Last month, an official said that Iran has now the lowest birth rate in the Middle East after experiencing the fastest decline in births during the past three decades.
Saleh Ghasemi, head of the Center for Strategic Research on Population told a local news agency that the current birth rate is 1.6 for each woman at the age of fertility. He added that in mid-1980s Iran had a 6.5 birth rate, one the highest in the world, but it has been declining since.