Portugal was in 2015 the European Union member state with the lowest fertility rate, at 1.31, and the one in which the number of live births had fallen most since 2001, according to figures released on Wednesday by the EU statistics office, Eurostat.
Between 2001 and 2015 the number of live births in Portugal fell by more than 24%, from 112,774 to 85,500. In 2001 the fertility rate (number of live births per woman) was 1.45.
By contrast, Sweden saw the number of live births soar almost 26%, from 91,466 to 114,870.
France had the highest fertility rate in 2015, at 1.96, followed by Ireland with 1.92.
In the EU as a whole, 5,103,000 children were born in 2015, up 40,217 or 0.8% from 2001.
The Eurostat report shows Bulgaria and Romania as the countries where women have their first child the youngest, at around 26 years old in 2015. Italy is the country where they are oldest when giving birth to their first child, at almost 31.
In Portugal, the average age at which women had their first child was 29.5.