The general trend of an ageing population has accelerated more than expected according to the current demographic prognosis, representatives of the Slovak Statistics Office (ŠÚ) announced on June 11.

Head of the ŠÚ, Ľudmila Benkovičová, told the TASR newswire that on the last day of 2013, Slovakia had 5,415,949 inhabitants, 2,776,889 of whom were women. She noted that last year was characterised by a high level of stability in almost all demographic processes with minimal annual variation in indicators of fertility, mortality, marriage, divorce and abortion.

“In 2013, 54,823 children were born, which is around 712 fewer than in 2012," said Benkovičová. In 2013, 52,089 people died in Slovakia; 348 fewer than in the previous year. The rate of natural increase thus stood at 2,734 people, which was 364 fewer than the increase in 2012.

In 2013, 2,379 migrants moved to Slovakia, only a third of the number in 2008. “As many as 88 percent of all immigrants were Europeans,” said Zuzana Podmanická from the ŠÚ. Most of the people who moved to Slovakia were from the Czech Republic - 1,137, the United Kingdom - 617, and Hungary - 385.

The average age of the population for both sexes has increased by 0.3 years - to 38 years for men and to 41.2 for women. The ageing population in Slovakia reflects a fundamental change in reproductive behaviour, manifested particularly in a significant reduction in fertility, experts opined. Extended longevity has also contributed to the trend.

Podmanická pointed out that the findings concerning the ageing population are more severe than those predicted by population estimates. “The expected gains from higher fertility and migration haven’t materialised, the ageing process has intensified,” she explained, as quoted by TASR. If the current trend continues, in 20-30 years Slovakia, along with Poland, will have the oldest population in the European Union.

(Source: TASR)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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