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Thread: Changes in the age-structure of the population

  1. #1
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    Default Changes in the age-structure of the population

    The population is roughly divided into three age-groups, the 0-14 year olds, the 15-64 year olds and the 65+ year olds. The western world is anticipating the number of the over 65's to rise very fast in the future. In Finland the current age-structure is

    0-14 16%
    15-64 66%
    65- 18%

    Finland is probably the first country in the world where the number of over 65's has already surpassed that of the under 15's. The future projections are as follows:

    2040

    0-14 15%
    15-64 58%
    65- 27%

    2060

    0-14 15%
    15-64 56%
    65- 29%

    For the sake of comparison the same figures for your country:

    0-14 20%
    15-64 68%
    65- 11%

    Therefore your country is not facing similar imminent problems with an ageing population as Finland is. Even though it is really a demographic miracle to have more over 65's than under 15's Finland is only the frontrunner in that respect as that will be the trend in almost any western country in the years to come. Obviously after some time things will even out but that may well be in the 2060's or some time when todays 0-14's will be over 65's.

    This scenario of being overburdened by an army of elderly population is the most common argument in favour of more immigration. That can not however stand a closer scrutiny. If we suppose that a country always imports a number of young immigrants in order to keep the proportion of the elderly at an "acceptable level" that means that the overall population keeps on growing almost exponentially as the immigrants themselves also get older.

    One common claim in Finland is that as there have been over 560,000 abortions since 1970, so in 40 years, if all those people had ben allowed to be born, they would themselves have adult children by this time and there would be no talk of a future labour-shortage. On the other hand, just as possible is that if all those over half a million aborted children had been allowed to be born there might have been mass-unemployment and mass-emigration.

    One thing about predicting the future population-trends has always been the same and that is that the increase in the average life-expectancy has always been underestimated. Therefore in 2060 there could be even more of the over 65's than predicted as not nearly as many of them have died as has been predicted. Indeed, the estimated life-expectancy in Finland in the year 2060 is 87 years for males and 91 years for females. That seems utopistic today as both numbers are 10 years less today but in 50 years time those figures could even prove to be too short a life-expectancy.

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    Ireland's demographic is completely different. we had over 800k under 14 in 2006 and less than 500k over 65.
    Beyond 20/20 WDS - Table View

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    I was mistaken when I said that Finland is the first country to have moreover 65's than under 15's. In Japan the figures are as follows:

    0 - 14 13,5 %
    2) 15- 64 64,3 %
    3) 64 - 22,2 %.

    Indeed, as the population of Japan today is 125m it is estimated to have dropped to 90m by the year 2050 and 40% of those 90m will be over 65's.

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    Why are less people having children?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TaxHavenSite View Post
    Why are less people having children?
    The answer is the introduction of contraceptives, which is a good thing. There are fewer unwanted children than decades ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TaxHavenSite View Post
    Why are less people having children?
    It is discouraged by business. Pesky children mean pesky maternity leave. Don't mind about the future.

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    Some opinions on the topic.

    Adair Turner, economist and chair of the UK Pensions Commission, says projections show that just to maintain the ratio of 15 – 64 year-olds at their current level would need the UK population to rise from 59 million in 2005 to 136 million by 2050. The European Union’s population of 372 million would need to rise to 1,228 million in the same period, in an ever-increasing spiral – both completely environmentally and economically unsustainable.

    Similarly, for Canada to maintain its ratio of old-age citizens at 20 per cent, immigration levels would have to be 28 times their present level, bringing the national population to a staggering level of 165.4 million people in 2050.

    The demographic false alarm

    The Western fear of ageing populations must be faced one day, and the sooner the better. The solution to an ageing population cannot be by increasing the younger population, because they in turn will age and need more younger populations – the situation will only get worse.

    .....


    Look carefully at who is putting forward the 'ageing population' argument for increased population and why they are putting it forward. It is business councils and property investors who push for more population because that means more markets, more building, and increasing property values. And overseas there are millions of economic refugees who need somewhere to go. Declining populations are truly a bogey. And more than blue eyes, it is the best of our civilisation that needs saving and promoting, not dependent upon national origin.
    Ageing and stable populations are not a threat

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    But arn't older people also able to do more then in previous decades?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Éireann go Brách View Post
    Indeed, couldn't have said it better myself. Curing the problem of ageing population by bringing in immigrants is alike to curing alcoholism by having another drink.

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    Would developing drugs that slow down the biological aging process,be a good solution?

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