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About 3 in 10 women remain permanently childless in Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Permanent childlessness has increased rapidly across East Asia.

Figure 1 – Highly developed countries with the highest levels of childlessness among women born in 1960 and 1972 and with the largest increases in the share of permanently childless women.

Note: East Asian countries and Singapore shown in red, Western and Northern European countries in blue, Southern European countries in green, other countries in grey. Data are based on 36 countries and territories: 5 East Asian countries and territories covered here, Canada, the United States, and 29 countries in Europe. Data for some countries do not refer to the women born in 1960 and 1972, but to the nearest cohorts with available data.

Source: Sobotka T. Population & Societies, 595, INED, December 2021 Data and estimates are derived from the Human Fertility Database, censuses, and national surveys. 

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