Анатолій Кінах

Be fruitful and multiply and replenish the Earth and subdue it…

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Ukraine is a unique country, including in terms of demographics. Why are we dying out? Experts cite various reasons: poor economic situation, high mortality, outflow of young people abroad… The population of any country is formed by two components: natural increase or killing (the difference between births and deaths) and the influx of migrants. In Ukraine, more people have died than been born for several decades. Why? – “The natural decline of the population in our country is caused by two factors, – says an expert at the Institute of Self-Organization – Vadym Gordin. – The main – unfavorable age structure of the population. At the peak of the reproductive age groups is now a small generation that was born in the 1990s. It will determine the birth rate in the next decade, and compared to the situation when it was determined by a large generation of people born in the 1980s, the number of births will continue to decline. An additional factor is the direct reproductive behavior of young women. “There is reason to believe that the generation born in the 1990s will give birth to their first child later and will probably have fewer children on average than the previous generation,” Vadim Gordin continued. Until 2019, the natural decline of the population was partially offset by the influx of migrants, but due to the “corona crisis” their number fell to its lowest level. Plus the slowdown in the economy and population began to decline sharply.
The demographic situation in which we find ourselves today has deteriorated literally before our eyes. A few years ago, we saw the process of returning home so-called “guest workers” and a higher number of births. But this year the birth rate is falling sharply. In Ukrainian society there is a dynamic process of population aging. The tendency of narrowing of reproduction of the population is symptomatic. The situation is complicated by slow economic dynamics, a large “shadow” sector of the economy and the attractiveness of labor markets in neighboring countries.
Demographic development of Ukraine is taking place against the background of such negative trends as population decline (at the beginning of 2020 – 41.9 million people without the temporarily occupied territory of Crimea and Sevastopol, in 2010 – 46 million people, aging population (share of people aged) 65 years and older in the total population in 2020 was 17% (according to the UN grading, the elderly population is considered to be those in which this share is more than 7%.) According to the NAS of Ukraine, in the period up to 2050, the share people aged 60 and over in the total population will increase to 33 percent. , with an average life expectancy at birth in Ukraine in 2019 was 72 years, in the European Union two years ago the average value of this indicator was 81 years.
High premature mortality in working age remains an acute problem in Ukraine, especially among men who live on average 10 years less than women (in developed European countries only 3.5 – 5 years). Labor productivity is only 22% of labor productivity in the European Union. Each year, the number of deaths significantly exceeds the number of births, which leads to persistent depopulation. The birth rate in Ukraine is relatively low, with an average of 12-13 children per 10 women, which does not provide a simple replacement of generations.

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