There were 4,391 live births in Iceland in 2022, down by 488 live births from the previous year when 4,879 children were born. The decrease between two years has never been so sharp before. The number of boys was 2,301 and the number of girls 2,090, i.e. 1,101 boys for every 1,000 girls.
The main measure of fertility is the total fertility rate. It is generally assumed that fertility needs to be around 2.1 children to maintain the human population in the long term. In 2022, the total fertility rate of Icelandic women was 1.59 and has not been lower since measurements began in 1853. In 2018, the total fertility rate was 1.71, which is the second lowest total fertility rate ever recorded in the country. Total fertility rate has not risen above 2.0 for the past ten years in Iceland, the last time it happened was in 2012 when it was 2.04.
Age-specific fertility rate has never been lower among mothers under twenty
Age-specific fertility rate among mothers under twenty was 3.0 per 1,000 women in 2022 which is very low compared with the period 1961-1965 when it peaked at 84 children per 1,000 women. Apart from the last two years, the year 1870 is the only other year in which the birth rate of mothers under twenty went below four children per 1,000 women.
The age of mothers at the birth of a child has increased on average in recent decades. The mean age of primiparas in 2022 was 28.9 years compared with less than 22 years in the 1970s. For the third time since 1932, age-specific fertility rate is highest among women aged 30 to 34. Women in that age group had 105.1 children per 1,000 women in 2022. Age-specific fertility rate among women aged 25 to 29 was only 99 in 2022 which is the first time it went below 100 children per 1,000 women.
Children born in Iceland but domiciled abroad are not included while children born outside Iceland but domiciled in Iceland are included.