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Fertility rates continue to sag in Japan and South Korea even as many of their OECD peers have reversed 10-year declines.

Uptrend in birthrates among rich nations skips Japan, South Korea

80% of key OECD members reverse fertility drops as more couples share parenting

KYO KITAZUME and YUKIKO AMANO, Nikkei staff writers | Japan

TOKYO -- Fertility rates rose in 80% of major developed nations last year but fell in Japan and South Korea. Many experts blame the two countries' persistently declining birthrates on the lack of gender equality in sharing housework and parental duties.

In 2021, total fertility rates -- the average number of children born per woman over a lifetime -- rose on the year in 19 of 23 OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) nations for which recent data is available, according to research by Nikkei. Many of those members of the OECD actually reversed a 10-year downtrend in birthrates.

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