Meanwhile the government is encouraging people to have more babies despite the falling birthrates (Taiwan's now the lowest in the world) and widespread rejection of the idea of having kids. The Year of the Tiger (cue Al Stewart) is supposed to be a bad year for kids to be born in the traditional Chinese view, and Taiwan experiences a drop of 50K births in such a year. Tiger kids are supposed to be vicious or bring harm to the family, but also be especially creative. AFP has the numbers:
Government figures showed that 271,450 babies were born in the last Year of the Tiger in 1998, a fall of 54,550 people from the previous year.______
By contrast, the figure rose to 305,312 in 2000, the last Year of the Dragon, considered to be a sign destined for good fortune.
Taiwan already has one of the lowest birth rates in the world, affecting everything from the education system to healthcare.
The island’s birth rate, based on the number of childbirths per 1,000 people each year, stood at 8.29 last year, according to interior ministry figures.
That compared to a global average of more than 20 births per 1,000 people, according to the United Nations.
There were 191,310 babies born in Taiwan last year, down 3.74 percent from the previous year.
- Beautiful videos of Taiwan's mountains and national parks on youtube
- Jon Adams in Christian Science Monitor explains why the US sells arms to Taiwan.
- Taiwan laptop makers warn of labor shortages in China's booming coastal regions, a growing problem that the media has been remarking on for about a year now.
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