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Old-age dependency ratio increasing in the EU

13/07/2020

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Under the baseline scenario of the latest population projections issued by Eurostat, the EU’s population will continue to grow older.

This can be illustrated by the old-age dependency ratio, defined as the ratio of the number of elderly people (aged 65 years and over) compared with the number of people of working-age (15-64 years).

The EU’s old-age dependency ratio is projected to be at 57% in 2100, almost double that of 2019 (31%). This means that there will be fewer than two persons of working age for each elderly person aged 65 and over.

The projected increase in old-age dependency ratio follows the trend observed in the past decade (26% in 2009).

 

Projected old-age dependency ratio, 2100

 

Source dataset: tps00200

 

Projected old-age dependency ratio: highest in Poland, lowest in Cyprus

By 2100, across the EU Member States, the old-age dependency ratio is projected to be highest in Poland (63%), followed by Italy, Malta and Finland (all 62%) as well as Croatia (61%).

At the other end of the scale, the lowest ratios are projected in Cyprus (52%), Sweden and Czechia (both 53%), Germany, Denmark and Belgium (all 54%).

 

 

Note: The European Union (EU) includes 27 EU Member States. The United Kingdom left the European Union on 31 January 2020. Further information is published here.

 

Methodological note: Eurostat’s population projections result from a set of assumptions on future developments for fertility, mortality and net migration. In other words, population projections are ‘what-if’ scenarios that track population developments under a set of assumptions. For this reason, population projections should not be considered as forecasts.

Given the intrinsic uncertainty of future population dynamics, such results should be interpreted as only one of a range of possible demographic developments.

This article presents a concise summary of the latest population projections results, for the ‘baseline scenario’, calculated on the set of assumptions for fertility, mortality and migration for the time horizon 2019 to 2100.

 

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