In the first half of 2018, 17,608 children were born in Croatia, 217 more than in the same period last year, the Ministry of Public Administration reported on Tuesday.
“Data published by the Ministry in its statistical report is taken from the civil registry for a defined period of time, up until the day when data is processed. It is important to keep in mind that births must be registered within 30 days,” the Ministry said.
The most children, 5,718, were born in the City of Zagreb, followed by Split-Dalmatia County with 2,037 births.
The fewest children, only 123, were born in the Lika-Senj County.
The national statistics bureau reported on Tuesday that Croatia's population is significantly decreasing, due in part to increasingly lower birth rates.
The number of live births recorded has been decreasing since 1998, dropping below 40,000 in 2003 for the first time, and is continuing to decrease, with only 36,600 live births in 2017.
In 1990, the average age of women having their first child was 24.3, whereas in 2017 the average increased to 29 years of age. In the meantime, the average age of mothers having their first child in the European Union also increased to 30.6 years.