Sub Saharan Africa:
Africa's population is growing faster than
any other region in the world.
On average, Africa has the
highest fertility rates.
Several countries in East and Southern
Africa are entering a demographic transition where birth rates
are declining steadily along with death rates.
Fertility rates
in Kenya have declined 20% in four years, and declined by 33% in
Zimbabwe over the last 10 years.
Between 1997 and 1999, total
fertility rates in East and Southern African countries can be
expected to continue declines of similar magnitude.
In West
Africa, however, declines will be less due to constraints to date
on program implementation and persistent social traditions that
support higher fertility.
Asia and the Near East:
Asia has 60% of the world's population.
As such, changes in average fertility rates have a tremendous
impact on the size of the world's population.
On average, the
total fertility rate for regional countries in 1996 was 3.5,
excluding China.
This represents a 23% reduction from the
average TFR of 4.3 in 1990.
Over this period, USAID has made
significant investments in family planning and health programs as
well as other development efforts, making a major contribution to
this decline.
Contraceptive prevalence has increased sharply in
these countries over this period, and now averages 45% across the
In most of these countries that still have relatively
high fertility rates, USAID will continue to make these
investments over the coming year.
As such, regional
contraceptive prevalence is expected to increase by at least
another 10% between 1996 and 1999, leading to a decline in TFR
from 3.6 to 3.4 by the end of FY 1999.
Latin America and the Caribbean:
On average over the last 10
years, the region's total fertility rate declined by 32% between
1987 and 1997, from 4.5 to 3.4 births per woman.
This included
significant recent declines in countries such as Bolivia, which
demonstrated a 20% decrease in the total fertility rate (from 6.0
to 4.8) between 1989 and 1996.
Further reductions in fertility
in the region by at least another 5% are anticipated
by the end
of 1999.
Europe and the New Independent States:
With the exception of
several of the Central Asian Republics, high fertility rates are
not a severe problem in the region.
There is considerable
variation in total fertility rates as well; ranging from 1.3 in
Russia to 3.4 in Turkmenistan and 3.7 in Tajikistan. Increased
access to and quality of family planning and reproductive health
services has had a significant impact; in Russia for example,
contraceptive use increased from 19% in 1990 to 24% in 1994.
the same time, the number of abortions per 1000 women declined
from 109 to 76.
Continued increase in access to family planning
and reproductive health services is expected to result in
reductions in fertility rates in the Central Asian Republics as

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