Singapore registered 32,630 new-born babies in the first 10 months of this year, local media reported on Friday.
According to local TV broadcaster Channel NewsAsia, the figure is far short of the 50,000 needed to replace the population each year. For the whole of 2008, 39,826 babies were born in Singapore.
The broadcaster said that some sociologists argue that one important reason for this lack of improvement in birth rate is the state of the economy.
“A lot of family planning decision is being made based on the economy, like whether a person can keep their job, maintain their job. Their salary over the couple of years would be a main determinant,” Chang Yau Hoon, from the School of Social Sciences at the Singapore Management University, was quoted as saying.