Updated: 27 Apr 2018
Next update: 27 Apr 2019

The total fertility rate refers to the estimated number of children the woman gives birth to, provided that the fertility rate of that year prevails during the whole reproductive period of that woman on condition that she will not die before the end of the said period. The total fertility rate is obtained by adding together fertility rates calculated for one year.

The general fertility rate indicates the number of liveborn children per 1,000 women of the mean population aged 15 to 49. The age-specific fertility rate indicates the number of live births per 1,000 women of the mean population in the age group in question.


Total fertility rate at an all-time low

The total fertility rate was at an all-time low in 2017, i.e. 1.49 children per woman. The rate was second lowest in 1973, when it was 1.50 children per woman. In the previous year 2016, the total fertility rate was 1.57. Since 1969, the total fertility rate has been below the replacement level, which is 2.1 children per woman.

Compared to the year before, the total fertility rate went down for women of nearly all ages, most clearly for those aged under 30. In 2017, women who gave birth to their first child were, on average, 29.2 years of age. In 2016, the average age of first-time mothers was 29.1 years and in ten years it has risen by 1.0 years. Correspondingly, the average age of all women that gave birth went up by 0.1 years from the year before, to 30.9 years. Over the past ten years, it has risen by 0.8 years.