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The global trend towards smaller families is a reflection of people making reproductive choices to have as few or as many children as they want, when they want. When people lack choice, it can have a long-term impact on fertility rates, often making them higher or lower than what most people desire.
The report shows fertility rates, trends, and differentials for 43 countries. Eight types of measures are presented including total anf age-specific fertility rates, general and crude birth rates, the mean number of children born of women, total marital fertility rates and marital duration fertility rates, age at first birth, parity progression ratios, and birth intervals. These indicators are presented for the total country and by women's residence, education, work status, and migration status, and by the education and occupation of their husband.
This paper reviews the status of the demographic transition worldwide, discusses factors associated with fertility decline, and highlights challenges associated with completing the transition in developing countries. It is intended to help policymakers both here and abroad to better understand the need for continued efforts to reduce fertility and population growth rates, even in the wake of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.