Foreigners producing badly needed babies in SingaporeJune 25th, 2008 - 12:11 pm ICT by IANS
Singapore, June 25 (DPA) Foreigners are playing a significant role in producing babies amid Singapore’s drive to boost its population, official data said Wednesday. A total of 16,232 babies were born in the first five months of this year, an increase of 849 over the corresponding period last year.
Non-Singaporean fathers accounted for 25 percent, or slightly more than 4,000, according to figures published in The Straits Times from the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority’s Registry of Births and Deaths.
Non-Singaporean mothers accounted for 36 percent.
Malaysians topped the list. They were the fathers in 1,184 births and the mothers in 1,715 births.
Among the foreign dads, those from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka formed the second-largest group with 668 births, the report said. Mothers from these countries contributed 557.
Chinese dads were third, with 365 births. Moms from China were the second-most productive, giving birth to 1,053 newborns.
Fathers from seven countries belonging to the Association of South-East Asian Nations (Asean) - excluding Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia - formed the third largest group with 800 births. Mothers accounted for 297.
The city-state needs 50,000 newborns annually to replace the population of 4.6 million people, but has long fallen far short.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong unveiled a 300-million-Singapore-dollar ($224 million) baby-boosting package to encourage parenthood with longer paid maternity leaves and tax rebates.
Part of the policy is attracting immigrants. Foreigners currently number one million.
Fathers from Britain accounted for 213 births, those from Australia 162, American dads produced 109 offspring and Japanese 94.
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