Fertility rates at astonishing levels in shrinking Asia

LONDON, U.K.—In the politics of population, the magic number is 2.1. That is “replacement level:” if a country’s fertility rate (the average number of children a woman has in her lifetime) is 2.1, then the country’s population will remain level. Above that number, it starts to grow; below 2.1, it eventually falls. And something really significant is happening in Asia.

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