New York, Jan 1: An estimated 3,71,504 babies will be born around the world on New Year’s Day, with about 60,000 babies expected to be born in India alone, UN Children’s Fund (Unicef) said on Friday.
In total, an estimated 140 million (14 crore) children will be born in 2021. Their average life expectancy is expected to be 84 years.
While Fiji in the Pacific will welcome 2021’s first baby, the US will welcome its last.
Globally, over half of the births on the first day of New Year are estimated to take place in 10 countries: India (59,995), China (35,615), Nigeria (21,439), Pakistan (14,161), Indonesia (12,336), Ethiopia (12,006), the US (10,312), Egypt (9,455), Bangladesh (9,236) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (8,640), the Unicef said.
“The children born today enter a world far different than even a year ago, and a New Year brings a new opportunity to reimagine it,” Unicef Executive Director Henrietta Fore said in a statement.
“Children born today will inherit the world we begin to build for them – today. Let us make 2021 the year we start to build a fairer, safer, healthier world for children.”
In India, the babies born on Friday will have a life expectancy of 80.9 years, Unicef said.
An additional thousand babies are surviving each day due to the country’s efforts as envisaged in the India Newborn Action Plan 2014-2020, the UN agency said.
“Anticipating and addressing the potential impact of the pandemic is crucial if we are to prevent a roll back of gains made in saving the lives of children. As we do so,we must also think long term, to build back a better world when the crisis finally recedes,” said Unicef India Country Representative, Yasmin Ali Haque.
“The pandemic has shown us the need for systems and policies to be in place to protect people all the time, not just in the event of a crisis.”
This year will mark mark the 75th anniversary of Unicef.