Those concerned with fostering both women’s reproductive health and reproductive rights need to monitor closely the interplay between abortion and population policies. Currently the majority of countries with policies aimed at altering their fertility levels have abortion policies that are not in harmony with their fertility goals. Most antinatalist countries restrict women’s access to abortion and most pronatalist countries permit women an easy access to abortion. In both cases this lack of harmony allows critics of a country’s abortion policy to attack that policy with demographic arguments. Since the UN projects that 69 % of the world’s population by 2035 will be living in countries with below replacement fertility, demographic arguments for restricting a woman’s easy access to abortion are likely to proliferate, to become more salient and to constitute a real threat to women’s reproductive rights in particular countries.
- Total Fertility Rate
- Population Policy
- Stress Point
- Legal Abortion
- Abortion Policy
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The manuscript for this chapter was finished before the release of the UN’s 2010 Revision of World Population Prospects in May of 2011. This most current set of projections covers the entire twenty-first century, not just the period to 2050. Since the projections relevant for this study end in 2035, the projections from the 2008 Revision of World Population Prospects contained in this chapter do not significantly differ from those in the 2010 Revision of World Population Prospect for the relevant time period.
In addition to the 37 low fertility European countries these 21 countries currently have a TFR of 1.9 or less: Australia, Barbados, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Cuba, Cyprus, Georgia, Iran, Japan, Lebanon, Mauritius, North Korea, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.
Fifteen countries are projected to have a TFR of 1.9 or less by 2025: Bahamas, Bahrain, Brunei Darussalam, Costa Rica, Indonesia, Ireland, Maldives, Mexico, Mongolia, New Zealand, Saint Lucia, Turkey, United States, Uruguay, and Viet Nam. Nineteen additional countries are projected to reach that fertility level by 2035: Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belize, Bhutan, Grenada, Guyana, Iceland, India, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Libya, Malaysia, Myanmar, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sri Lanka, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.
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Hodgson, D. (2014). How Problematic Will Liberal Abortion Policies Be for Pronatalist Countries?. In: Kulczycki, A. (eds) Critical Issues in Reproductive Health. The Springer Series on Demographic Methods and Population Analysis, vol 33. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6722-5_8
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