3301.0 - Births, Australia, 2015 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 08/11/2016   
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MEDIA RELEASE
08 November 2016
Embargo: 11:30 am (Canberra Time)
120/2016
Teenage fertility rate lowest on record

While the fertility rate of Australian women is steady, teenage fertility has dropped to its lowest rate on record, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Australia’s total fertility rate in 2015 was 1.81 babies per woman, changing little since 2014 (1.8). However, in 2015, births to mothers aged 19 years and under continued to decline both in number (8,574) and proportion of all births (2.8 per cent).

"The low share of births to teenage mothers in 2015 breaks the previous record low of 3.1 per cent in 2014,” said Beidar Cho from the ABS.

"The fertility rate for 30-34 year olds was the highest of all age groups, followed by 25-29 year olds."

In comparison to other countries, the teenaged fertility rate of 11.9 births per 1,000 women was very close to Canada (11.1), less than New Zealand (18.5) and less than England and Wales (14.5).

"A total of 305,377 births were registered in Australia in 2015," said Ms Cho.

Consistent with previous years, Victoria recorded the lowest total fertility rate (1.7) and the Northern Territory the highest (2.1).

In 2015, the total fertility rate for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander mothers was 2.3. There were 18,537 births registered (6 per cent of all births) where at least one parent was an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Australian.

More details, including state and sub-state information, can be found in Births, Australia, 2015 (cat. no. 3301.0) available for free download from the ABS website http://www.abs.gov.au.

Media notes:
  • The total fertility rate represents the average number of babies that a woman could expect to bear if current fertility rates prevail throughout her reproductive lifetime.
  • Births registered in NSW increased by almost 10 per cent from the 2014 figure due to delayed processing throughout 2014. This resulted in a higher than usual number of births occurring in the previous year (2014) but registered in the subsequent year (2015).
  • Population fertility rates measure a community's actual reproductive outcomes - a concept of adding to the population through live births. Still births are not added to the population and therefore are not counted in this context; however, they are reported in Causes of Death, Australia (cat. no. 3303.0).
  • When reporting ABS data, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or ABS) must be attributed as the source.
  • For media requests and interviews, contact the ABS Communications Section on 1300 175 070 (8.30am - 5pm Mon-Fri).
  • Subscribe to our email notification service and get media releases or products sent to you on release.

Births, Summary Statistics

Change (%)
Change (%)
2005
2014
2015
2005 to 2015
2014 to 2015

Australia(a)
Births (no.)
264 493
299 697
305 377
15.5
1.9
Total fertility rate(b)
1.846
1.8
1.807
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
30.7
30.9
31
..
..
Median age of father (years)
32.9
33
33.1
..
..
New South Wales
Births (no.)
91 224
91 074
100 079
9.7
9.9
Total fertility rate(b)
1.912
1.727
1.869
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
30.7
31.2
31.2
..
..
Median age of father (years)
33
33.4
33.4
..
..
Victoria
Births (no.)
63 297
74 224
73 568
16.2
-0.9
Total fertility rate(b)
1.732
1.731
1.678
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
31.5
31.5
31.6
..
..
Median age of father (years)
33.5
33.6
33.6
..
..
Queensland
Births (no.)
51 707
63 066
61 745
19.4
-2.1
Total fertility rate(b)
1.872
1.906
1.847
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
29.9
30.1
30.2
..
..
Median age of father (years)
32.2
32.1
32.3
..
..
South Australia
Births (no.)
17 801
20 384
19 587
10
-3.9
Total fertility rate(b)
1.776
1.854
1.763
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
30.1
30.6
30.7
..
..
Median age of father (years)
32.6
32.8
32.8
..
..
Western Australia
Births (no.)
26 253
35 403
35 135
33.8
-0.8
Total fertility rate(b)
1.87
1.884
1.846
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
30.4
30.6
30.7
..
..
Median age of father (years)
32.8
32.8
32.9
..
..
Tasmania
Births (no.)
6 310
5 935
5 680
-10
-4.3
Total fertility rate(b)
2.075
1.988
1.911
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
29.4
29.6
29.8
..
..
Median age of father (years)
32
31.7
31.9
..
..
Northern Territory
Births (no.)
3 660
4 026
4 004
9.4
-0.5
Total fertility rate(b)
2.195
2.12
2.108
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
27.9
28.9
29.5
..
..
Median age of father (years)
31.6
31.6
32.2
..
..
Australian Capital Territory
Births (no.)
4 210
5 552
5 542
31.6
-0.2
Total fertility rate(b)
1.596
1.767
1.745
..
..
Median age of mother (years)
31.4
31.6
31.7
..
..
Median age of father (years)
33.4
33.7
33.7
..
..

(a) Includes Other Territories.
(b) Babies per woman. The total fertility rate represents the average number of babies that a woman could expect to bear during her reproductive lifetime if current fertility rates continue.