While the EU has never had as many inhabitants in 2015, due to migration crisis, a study found that the mortality rate has outpaced that of fertility. A first in the history of the Union.
For the first time since the existence of the European Union, the number of deaths will was more important than the number of births in a year. According to a Eurostat study published on Friday, 5.1 million children were born in the EU in 2015, while 5.2 million people die. “The EU has experienced for the first time a negative natural change of the population,” said the Office for European statistics in a statement. A 6% increase in deaths compared to 2014.
This figure is however not surprising as Laurent Toulemon, demographer and director of research at the National Institute of Studies demographic (INED). “It’s a figure that was expected, and that will probably increase in the coming years. The increase in mortality is mainly due to aging populations born after World War II, “he explains to the Le Figaro . “People who were born in the years 1945-1950 reach the age of dying. In addition, at the end of this period of high fertility has been the Baby Boom, the number of births has decreased. These two factors have created the imbalance that sees today “says demographer.
In addition to the natural aging of the population, another phenomenon caused that figure. “According to the projections of demographers, the curves of mortality and fertility were to meet in 2016, but there has been, in 2015, a rather deadly flu epidemic in Europe who advanced maturity,” says Gilles Pison in Le Figaro , a professor at the National natural history Museum and associate researcher at INED.
This phenomenon should not be reversed in the coming years. According to Eurostat figures, the age group of 45-49 years is the most represented in 2015. It represented 7.4% of the European population. But according to projections, it would represent more than 7% in 2030 and 6.6% in 2040. Conversely, the age group of 80-84 years, which accounted for 2.8% of the population of EU in 2015, expected to rise to 3% in 2030 and 3.6% in 2040. “Because of medical advances, people are living longer today. However, there is no drug that makes immortal, and everyone is required to die. So if there are more older people, the number of deaths will increase. It is a cause-effect relationship, “continues Gilles Pison.
Meets trends for several years, countries of birth rates such as Ireland, France, the UK and the Sweden are the highest in Europe and continue to exceed them mortality rates. These are the southern countries such as Italy, Portugal and Greece that identify the fewer births. But it is in the countries of Eastern Europe (Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Lithuania and Latvia) the population decreased the most due to the difference between births and deaths.
Despite this unprecedented reversal curves, the population in the EU continued to increase in 2015 due to the migration intake compensates. More than 1.9 million migrants were thus installed during last year.