65 years and over: 5.1%
Life expectancy at birth: 70.3 years
Population in 2050: 94.41m
After the 1979 revolution, with the population standing at only 36 million, the new clerical leadership abandoned the Shah's family planning regime.
For Ayatollah Khomeini, population was a strategic asset at a time when
In 1988, with the war over, the
At the same time, women were given more opportunities for higher education and employment. Economic independence offered women the freedom to choose whom they married, where they lived and how many children they would have.
But for the conservatives, smaller families were seen as giving in to the western values of secularism and individualism.
In 2006, President
He said officials, including himself, were to blame for giving
Financial incentives and housing concessions have now been reinstated for large families. Pregnant state employees are offered nine months' paid leave. University courses on family planning have been dropped and the budgets of birth-control clinics cut. The aim is to more than double
At the same time reformist critics argue that it is not the quantity of population that is of strategic importance to
- United States Shouldn't Have Gone to Bat for Egypt's Morsi
- Then What in Syria?
- The Monotonous Middle East
- Public Opinion in Arab World Turns Against Iran
- Turkey Finds That Trouble Knows No Bounds
- Iraq: Mission Failure
- Iraq Can't Avoid Syria Contagion
- Sectarian Pressures Tearing Up the Sykes-Picot Map
- Saudi Arabia takes tentative steps to end child marriage
- Who are Turkey's Agents Provocateurs?
- US and Russia must work to stop snowballing Syrian crisis
- Syria: Russia's Big Test
- Syria's Religious War
- Back to the Future for Syria
- Hoping for Change in Syria
- A Grass-Roots View of the Syrian Uprising
- Is America About to Checkmate Russia in Syria?
- US Weighs Syrian Intervention, Despite Consequences
- Date with History... Cairo's First Revolution
- Obama Got Ahead of Himself with 'Red Line' Talk on Syria
- Palestine After Fayyad: The Choice Between Cooperation and Conflict
- Turkey: PKK Fighters Begin Their Withdrawal to North Iraq
- The Path to Follow after Syria Crosses the Red Line
- Redlines and the Problems of Intervention in Syria
- Leadership, Not Locusts, is Egypt's Greatest Plague
- Iran's North Korean Nuclear Future
- Iran: Birth Control Flip Flops
- Saudi Arabia: Cyber-savvy Youth on the Rise
- Syria: Chess Match Turned Free-for-All
- Iran's Regional Quagmire
- The Saudi-Iranian Rivalry and the Future of Middle East Security
- Iran's Internal Politics
- Iran's Pursuit of Nuclear Weapons in a Regional Context
- Israeli Apology to Turkey Big First Step But Not Sea Change
- Israel's Insightful Cynicism
- Settlements Still Blocking Middle East Peace Agreement
- With Bus Segregation Israeli Apartheid Becomes More Blatant
- Is Egypt Being Primed for a Coup?
- The Somaliazation of Syria
- Western Intervention in Syria Long Overdue
- Promoting Peace, But Fueling War in Syria
- Flight of Fancy
- Would the Turkish Model Work in Arab Spring Countries?
- Kerry Talks Regional Issues With Gulf Arab Leaders
- Export Oil, Import Water: The Middle East's Risky Economics
- Syrians Risk Their Health to Keep Warm
- Evidence of Syrian Cluster Bomb Use
- Syrian Rebels Capture Most of Key City
- Iranian Nuclear Program World's 'Greatest Challenge'
- Self-Interested Leaders Roil Chaos in Middle East
(c) 2013 Tribune Media Services, Inc., "Iran: Birth Control Flip Flops"