Iran has restricted family planning services at state-run hospitals as it tries to boost its population size. Vasectomies will no longer be carried out at state-run medical centres and contraceptives will only be offered to women whose health might be at risk.
The Iranian government has become concerned about fewer births and an increasingly ageing population. Annual population growth has dropped below 1%. Just two years ago, the country was recorded as having population growth of 1.4% and, now, if no action is taken, Iran could become one of the world's oldest countries in the next 30 years. The Ministry of Health explained, “We have controlled mortality under age five, and life expectancy increased by 20 years, however, delay in marriage and childbearing, and the gap between the first child and the second one are issues that need to be addressed.”
Over the past four decades, life expectancy has increased from 50 years to more than 70 years, 21.4 years for men and 23.4 years for women.
Marriage and children within marriage are both in decline. The marriage rate had dropped by 40% in a decade.
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has been calling for people to have more children, saying he wants the current population population of 80 million to grow to 150 million.