MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines continues to see a decline in the number of children in 2020, a trend seen in recent years, according to the Commission on Population and Development (PopCom) in a statement on Sunday, August 14.
Citing a recent report released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), PopCom said the share of Filipino children below the age of 5 was at 10.2% in 2020, down from 10.8% in 2015 and 12.6% in 2000.
The percentage in the population of Filipinos under 15 also declined to 30.7% in 2020 from 37% in 2000.
PopCom earlier noted that the Philippines recorded its lowest number of births in 34 years, with only 1,516,042 registered births in the country in 2020.
“The dynamics of the Philippine population continue to see lower levels of fertility, as evidenced by the decline in numbers of children under 5 years old,” PopCom Executive Director Juan Antonio Perez III said.
The statistics in the report, the PopCom chief said, points at “the effectiveness of the Philippines’ family planning program.” As the information was derived in the first year of the pandemic, the figures may potentially be lower in 2021.
The commission also earlier noted the Philippines recorded a 13% decrease in the number of adolescent births, setting a record for the sharpest decline since 2003.
There was also an increase in the number of Filipinos using birth control in 2020 with a total of 8,085,000 Filipinos, an increase of 6% from 2019.
PopCom also noted that the population of women of reproductive age – or those aged 15 to 49 – increased from 26 million in 2015 to 27.8 million in 2020.
PopCom estimates at least 9 million women in that age group will require family planning services.
Perez added the national government also has to support the contraceptive needs of 7.6 million women who are currently being served by local governments.
The commission also observed a “steady growth” in the Philippines’ working age population, which made up 63.9% of the population in 2020, up from 63.3% in 2015 and 59.1% in 2000.
Increasing senior population
Meanwhile, PopCom said that the number of Filipinos aged 60 and older was at 9.2 million or 8.5% of the total population, which doubled from 4.5 million in 2000.
The median age of Filipinos also went up from 23.3 in 2010 to 25.3 in 2020. The increasing age of the Filipino population continues a 30-year trend.
PSA data also showed that the aging index, the proportion of persons aged 60 and over per 100 persons under the age of 15, increased from 23.4 in 2015 to 27.6 in 2020.
A 2018 study from the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) earlier said that the Philippines was on its way to becoming an aging society. – Rappler.com