Figures show rise in birth rate
The number of births in Scotland in 2004 was almost 3% higher than the previous year, according to figures announced in Parliament today.
In reply to a Parliamentary Question, Deputy Minister for Finance and Public Service Reform Tavish Scott said that the provisional number of births was 53,954 - 2.9% higher than in 2003. This was the highest number of births since 1999, when 55,147 babies were born.
Welcoming the new figures, Mr Scott said:
"We have seen a gradual increase in the number of births since a low point in the first quarter of 2002. The figures for 2004 show that 1500 more babies were born that year than in 2003. These figures are encouraging but overall population trends still indicate that Scotland will face an ageing and declining population in the long term."
The question from Stewart Stevenson MSP asked the Scottish Executive how many male and female births there were in each of the last 5 years. Tavish Scott's reply shows that there were 27,768 male and 26,186 female births in 2004 (provisional figures) compared with 26,906 male and 25,526 female births in 2003.
The Registrar General's Preliminary Return for 2004, to be published on 24 March 2005, will give a slightly later provisional total of births in 2004. The final figure for 2004 will be published in July 2005 in Scotland's Population 2004, The Registrar General's Annual Review of Demographic Trends.
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