Monday, November 24, 2008

Cuba’s Birth Rate Increased in 2008

Periodico 26

By Osvaldo Rodríguez Martínez

HAVANA, Cuba, Nov 23, (ACN) The sustained increase of the live-birth indicator reported in Cuba from January through October of 2008, compared to last year, is good news and it could turn the demographic course of the country.

Preliminary information published by the National Statistics Office (ONE) reveals that the number of live births surpassed the figure reported in 2007 by 7, 996 children, standing for 8,8 percent on the birth rate; such an indicator is only comparable to the rate reported in 2005.

All Cuban provinces saw their birth rates increase; though the phenomenon is more significant in the eastern territories of Guantanamo, Ciego de Avila, Granma and Holguin, while lower indicators were reported in western Havana City, Pinar del Rio and Cienfuegos.

The statistics were compiled from figures collected in health centers and other data contributed by the Statistics Department of the Public Health Ministry, plus estimates made by ONE of births that took place out of health institutions.

The ONE report says that such a growing trend could continue this year up to June 2009. Any prediction will be difficult to make later, since the birth rate will be affected by the impact by recent weather phenomena on many Cuban families.

By the end of 2007, Cuba reported a total population of 11, 296, 790 inhabitants, with a balanced number for both sexes, according to the ONE website www.one.cu.

The figure will lightly increase to later keep steady and even fall due to the low birth rate, which prevailed particularly in 2006 and 2007.

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