Greece’s population is shrinking by about 450,000 in a decade, meaning that in 30 years the country will have 1.5 million fewer people, according to the latest projections based on data released by the country’s statistics agency ELSTAT last week.
This trend is underpinned by data on youth, whose numbers are declining at an alarming rate due to declining fertility and increasing life expectancy. It is significant that in 1951 persons under the age of 14 made up 29% of the population, compared with 14% today.
The population of Greece in 2001 was estimated at 10.836 million, and in 2011 it grew to 11.123 million, mainly due to migration in that decade. In 2021, this figure fell to 10.679 million and the trend continues …
By breakdown, the percentage of the population over the age of 65 in 2001 was 14.5%. By 2011, it had grown to 19.3%, and in 2021 it reached 22.6%.
This is not surprising, since the gap between mortality and fertility has been widening since 1998. In particular, 84,767 births and 130,669 deaths were registered in 2021, despite expectations that the conditions created by the pandemic will lead to an increase in the birth rate. The fertility rate in Greece is 1.38 births per woman, one of the lowest in the European Union.
“By 2050, the number of people over 65 will exceed 800,000. Meanwhile, we currently have about 350,000 people over the age of 85, and by 2050 this age group will include another 150,000 to 200,000 people, ”Vironas Kotzamanis, professor of demography at the University of Thessaly, said in a media commentary. He also noted: this means that a significant percentage of the population will be left without close relatives who could support them.
Kotzamanis added that there are solutions that can bring results in the coming years and in the future, such as “reducing unemployment, that is, increasing the percentage of people of working age and really producing,” he said. “Currently 65 out of 100 people in Greece are of working age, and in Sweden [для примера] – 95 “. He stressed that increasing the proportion of workers will strengthen the economy and government funding, while providing young people with suitable conditions for having children. But how to do it, the professor, most likely, does not know himself.
It is worth recalling that European “thinkers” have already tried to resolve the issue through migration from overpopulated countries of East and Africa. As practice has shown, the solution was not entirely successful. Those who came did not want to integrate into the local realities, but they perfectly filled up the “staff” of the criminal community and the unemployed.
The collapse of the Soviet Union, the ensuing opening of borders and the flooding of economic migrants to the West helped bolster the rapidly aging population of Old Europe. But not for long…
The countries of Eastern Europe themselves found themselves in a situation where young and already accomplished specialists began to leave en masse for the richer countries of Western Europe, and then to the USA and Canada. The most illustrative example was Poland, from which more than 5 million people left, creating even the so-called. The “Polish plumbing phenomenon” is a symbolic image of cheap labor from Eastern Europe, which will migrate to the “old” EU countries as a result of the adoption of the “Directive on services in the internal market”. The image gained prominence in France during the debate over a referendum on the European Constitution in 2005.
The countries of Eastern Europe themselves quickly realized what this could threaten them with, and turned their gaze even further to the east – Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova. The result of which were peaceful and not very “revolutions”, after which these countries received the so-called. “visa-free”, which actually became a pass to the labor markets of these countries.
The result was not long in coming. Millions of people left Ukraine, Moldova and partly Belarus, replenishing the labor markets of Eastern Europe and allowing them to successfully solve serious economic and partly demographic reasons. True, in these countries themselves, the situation has turned from a difficult to a catastrophic one, and Russia, into the collapse of which money had been invested for so long and persistently, for some reason did not want to self-liquidate.
Photo courtesy of ru.depositphotos.com