Pakistan Institute of Development Economics



Interrelationships of Some Fertility Measures in Pakistan

Unlike mortality or migration, the fertility behaviour of a population largely determines its age distribution1. A high fertility population maintains a broad-based age pyramid by adding continuously a large number of persons at the first year of life. In such a population the dependency ratio of children (say persons under 15 years) remains high relative to the size of its working age population (say those aged 15-64 years). A decline in fertility reduces this ratio and restructures the age distribution to make it more favourable to economic growth2 [4]. For this reason the study of human fertility occupies a singularly important position in the demographic literature today. In this paper the fertility of the population of Pakistan is examined. The purpose of the paper is to evaluate several fertility measures obtained from data collected through the Population Growth Estimation project in Pakistan3. The interrelationships of these measures in terms of their practical utility to planners for action programmes will be examined. Further, the possible impact on fertility resulting from a rise in the age at marriage in Pakistan will be discussed. An effort will also be made to identify the demographic differentials, relevant to planners, in the two provinces of the country

Lee L. Bean, Masihur Rahman Khan

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