Posted Sep 29, 2022, 1:15 PMUpdated on Sep 29, 2022 at 1:16 p.m.
More than 740,000 babies. The number of births rose again last year in France, after six consecutive years of decline. INSEE has counted exactly 742,100, 0.9% higher than in 2020. A figure revised upwards compared to the first estimates for January. The statistics institute also notes that conceptions accelerated after each confinement linked to Covid.
However, the year 2021 had also started with a very marked decline in births until mid-February, which corresponds to children conceived during the first confinement, in the spring of 2020. The “context of the health crisis [liée au Covid] and strong economic uncertainty” was then able to encourage couples to “postpone their parenthood projects”, explains INSEE, which however did not observe the same phenomenon for the following confinements.
The two travel restriction periods at the end of 2020 and spring 2021 were thus followed by an acceleration in the number of conceptions. Result: the number of births rebounded in March and April 2021, as well as from August 2021 when, until the end of the year, the number of births was “much higher” each month than that of the same months of 2020.
Uncertainties for 2022
Another effect of the pandemic and the measures taken at the international level to contain its progression, the proportion of children whose two parents were born abroad fell between 2019 and 2021, while that of children with one parent born in abroad remained stable. Conversely, the proportion of children of two parents born in France has increased.
The oldest women of childbearing age drove the birth rate up last year, details INSEE. Births increased by 3.5% for women aged 30 to 34, by 4.8% for those aged 35 to 39 and by 5.3% for those aged 40 or over. On the other hand, the number of births to mothers under 30 is down.
In 2022, the number of births is higher in the first half than in the first six months of 2021, but it remains lower than in the first half of 2020, corresponding to a conception period not yet disrupted by the health crisis. In detail, the number of births fell in January, nine months after the third confinement, then they increased in February. “Difficult at this stage to know” if a sharp rise in births will occur this year in the fall, like last year, estimates INSEE.
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