Monday, August 3, 2015

3/8/15: Europe as a Demographic Disaster


Here are the latest UN projections for population growth though 2100 (best viewed by clicking on the image to enlarge):

Source: http://esa.un.org/unpd/wpp/Publications/Files/Key_Findings_WPP_2015.pdf.

Of all major regions around the world: only three are likely to post negative population growth. These are:

  • Europe - posting the most disastrous, by a mile, demographic prospect of all regions;
  • Followed by Asia, where cumulated population decline will be less severe (through 2100) than in Europe; and
  • Finally, by Latin America.
Here is a table calculated by me based on the UN projections showing 30 countries with largest declines in population over 2 periods: 2015-2030 and 2015-2050:


I group these countries by a historical sub-regions as follows:
  • EU 
  • Former USSR excluding currently in the EU
Several striking observations emerge:
  • One hears quite frequently media comments about the disastrous situation with Russian demographics. Except: Russian Federation is not in 30 countries with worst population growth performance over 1950-2015 period, while its counterparts in the USSR - Ukraine, Georgia and Belarus are. Russia will be ranked 19th worst performing (demographically) country in 2015-2030 and 2015-2050 period. But compare this to Ukraine (to be ranked 4th in 2015-2030 period and 3rd in 2015-2050 period); Republic of Moldova (expected to rank 11th in 2015-2030 period and 4th in 2015-2050 period); Belarus (forecast to rank 12th in both periods); Georgia (ranked 20th in 2015-2030 period forecasts - better than Russia, but 15th in 2015-2050 forecast - worse than Russia). I have not heard much of 'disastrous policies' assessments in the media concerning their demographic collapse predictions.
  • Another interesting aspect of the table is the exceptionally poor forecasted performance in demographics for the Eastern European states members of the EU.
You can see the above point 2 from the table below that selects EU member states:

Just for comparative reminder: Russian population (the benchmark case for media-covered demographic disaster) is forecast to shrink by 10.4% between 2015 and 2050. Which is bad, but better than 10 out of 29 EU member states (not benchmarks, according to the media, of a demographic disaster).

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