Last year, 22,557 children were born in Brussels and 33,780 in Wallonia. Births in the capital have been on a slight decline for a few years now. In Wallonia, this is a significant kink in the curve, after an increase in 2019. According to reports from the French-speaking Center for Perinatal Epidemiology.
It was previously known that fewer children were born in Flanders last year. There were 63,611, down 1,000 from a year earlier. That is a decrease of 1.7 percent.
Births also decline over time. For Flanders, you have to go back to 2003 to see an even lower birth rate. From that year on, the figure climbed, reaching a peak in 2010 with more than 71,000 births. special, there are fewer of them year after year.
A Flemish woman has an average of 1.55 children. Ten years ago this fertility rate was still 1.81.
The global trend is also declining in Wallonia and Brussels. Between 2012 and 2020, 9.8 percent fewer children were born in Brussels, and 12 percent fewer in Wallonia.
The same trend is occurring worldwide. From the States to China, the reproductive drive has been declining for years.
At the same time, fewer premature babies were born in Brussels and Wallonia, especially late prematurity. The number of children requiring neonatal care rose nearly 8 percent.
The decline was most pronounced during the first lockdown period and towards the end of the year.
Suspicion of a connection: expectant parents for the time being had a less hectic life, because homework became the rule and social life came to a standstill.
This has also been established for that period in Flanders.