China has announced that it has issued its first ever fertility and vaccination map to coincide with the country’s first official fertility and birth rate forecast.
The government is using the data to create an official fertility forecast for the coming year, which is intended to provide “confidence that the country can deliver the necessary investments in fertility and health, and can ensure the health of the population”, the National Development and Reform Commission said in a statement on its website.
“Fertility and vaccination are key priorities for China, and we are confident that the results of the fertility and immunisation campaign will be beneficial for the country,” it added.
The announcement came after the Chinese government warned that its fertility and population growth had slowed in recent years, after a series of epidemics that hit the country in recent months.
“It is clear that China’s fertility and mortality rates have reached a peak, and it is also evident that their population has reached its limit,” the commission said in an earlier statement.
China is expected to record an estimated 1.35 million new births in 2017, the highest annual number since the country began recording such data in 2005.
The country’s fertility rate has been declining for decades, with the current rate at about 3.1 births per woman in 2016.
China’s population was estimated to have reached around one billion in 2030, but is forecast to reach an estimated one billion by 2030.