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Population Scenarios and Policy Implications for Southern Mediterranean Countries, 2010-2050. MEDPRO Policy Paper No. 5, March 2013

Groenewald, George and de Beer, Joop (2013) Population Scenarios and Policy Implications for Southern Mediterranean Countries, 2010-2050. MEDPRO Policy Paper No. 5, March 2013. [Policy Paper]

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    Four population scenarios were derived that describe indicators of demographic behaviour for people living in different future political-economic contexts. This policy paper explores future trends in i) population growth at regional and national levels, ii) working age populations, in view of demographic dividend potential, and iii) elderly populations, in view of the financial burden they place on economies. Results show that different scenarios do not have large effects on population growth, at least up to 2030. This is due to the in-built ‘population momentum’ effect in the relatively young age-structures of most southern and eastern Mediterranean countries (SEMCs). In the short term, up to 2030, and depending on which economic-political scenario unfolds, SEMCs are expected to grow from 280 million people to a figure of between 362 and 349 million people. Thus, in a period of about 20 years SEMCs are expected to grow by between 69 and 83 million people. In the same period, EU27 populations will grow by 21 million; only from about 500 to 521 million people. Between 2030 and 2050, additional population growth is foreseen in SEMCs, between 48 and 62 million people, while EU27 populations are expected to grow by 4 million only. SEMCs vary widely regarding demographic transition profiles so that demographic dividend potentials also vary. Old-age dependency ratios – the share of elderly people in relation to the working age population – are still low compared to EU27 ratios, but will increase after 2035. Should SEMCs’ economies remain politically, economically and environmentally precarious in the coming decades, their relatively low dependency ratios may impose an even higher social and financial burden on economies than the EU countries’ high dependency ratios impose on their economies.

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    Item Type: Policy Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: EU policies and themes > External relations > EU-Mediterranean/Union for the Mediterranean
    EU policies and themes > Policies & related activities > social policy > general
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Centre for European Policy Studies (Brussels) > MEDPRO Policy Papers
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2014 13:42
    Number of Pages: 23
    Last Modified: 29 Jan 2015 11:13

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