Demographic trends in 2009: two civil unions (PACSs) for three marriages
On 1 January 2010, 64.7 million people were living in metropolitan France (mainland + Corsica) and in overseas départements. In 2009, the French population rose by 346,000. Births declined slightly to 821,000, but still exceeded the average of the past ten years. The number of deaths did not rise significantly. Couples are increasingly choosing civil unions (PACSs) to officialize their partnerships. In 2009, two PACSs were signed for every three marriages. The age at first marriage and at first childbirth continued to rise, approaching 30. The fertility rate remained one of the highest in Europe. One-half of all French births occur outside marriage. After a pause in 2008, female life expectancy started increasing again. It is now the second-longest in Europe, after Spain's. Male life expectancy continued on its steady uptrend.