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High Fertility Rates

S. These fertility rates have an impact on consumers and laborers in both Third World and developed countries. This analysis will now examine fertility rates in the Third World as a means of demonstrating their impact on customers and laborers in those countries and developed nations.

The worldÆs fertility rates have been dropping in both developed and Third World nations. In developed nations this creates a challenge as replacement levels of fertility are not maintained, leading to shortages of labor supply and a negative impact on productivity and economic growth. In Third World countries, declining fertility rates are still high but have seen dramatic improvement over the past few decades. As Wattenberg (1998) reports, over the past three decades the average fertility rate of women in Third World countries has declined with record-breaking speed from 6.2 to 3.0.

Despite the fact that most of the worldÆs population lives in Third World countries and despite the fact that all of the highest fertility rates are in Third World countries, there have been dramatic improvements in some Third World countries in fertility rate reduction. In Bangladesh, fertility fell from 6.2 to 3.57 from 1985 to 1997, and in Kenya the fertility rate dropped from 7.5 to 4.4 in the course of the same timeframe (Sieff, 1998). Global development is mainly responsible for the steep declines in fertility rates in


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