WASHINGTON — The United Kingdom has the best family-planning programs among industrial countries while the United States ranks seventh, a private population study showed today. Libya, Laos and Cambodia have the poorest records among developing nations.
Declines in family size correspond closely to the quality of family-planning services available, according to a new report by the Population Crisis Committee, which seeks to draw attention to the problems of overpopulation and to find ways to reduce growth.
With virtually no family planning services available, Cambodia, Laos and Libya shared a rating of zero in the committee's report.
On the 100-point scale used to rank developing nations, Taiwan had 92, followed by Singapore with a 90.
The more developed nations were ranked on a separate 30-point scale, which the United Kingdom led with a 29.
The United States was seventh with a 25 rating, behind West Germany, France, Canada, Italy and Australia.
"The United States has abdicated world leadership in birth-control and family-planning aid," charged Dr. Sharon L. Camp, vice president of the committee. "The world needs to more than double spending on family planning, yet U.S. technical and financial aid for international family planning has declined by 20% since 1985 and is in danger of eroding even further."
The United States last year and this has withheld its planned $25-million contribution to the U.N. Fund for Population Activities, charging that its programs aided China, where, American officials said, efforts to reduce family size included coercion.