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Chronicle of a demographic crisis foretold

11 julio, 2016 • By

Through this digital window I always try to submit relevant articles or facts that may be interesting and useful in forming an opinion. Often I’m aware that I may seem repetitive, but there are issues that cause me great concern and, above all, disquiet because I see that many of them -or that’s the impression I have-, do not occupy a prominent place on the agenda of Spanish decision-makers, especially on the agenda of policy makers. These are not trivial matters; given that they currently pose a serious problem that will only get worse in the short term if appropriate measures are not taken.

We cannot be astonished at something that is a crisis foretold. Births have recorded only falls since 1975 and the population continues to age. This not only affects the population balance (there must be a balance between the number of birth and deaths), but also has serious consequences economically. Society can not maintain itself with more retirees than working people, putting at risk the productivity model and the retirement and pensions system. In addition, the health system will have to cope with the challenges of an aging population, chronic diseases, the evolution of technology and new drugs.

I recently read that deaths have exceeded births for the first time since 1941, which in fact is the first year for which figures are available. This is something unprecedented, and extremely worrying.

It is striking to see how a country has failed to be alert and take urgent decisions in a situation that will get worse in the future and which will end up collapsing our welfare model because if there is no generational replacement, society falters. We must concentrate on rejuvenating our country and, in general, European society. More immigration, more maternity protection, more open policies toward our youth …

There is much to do and little time to decide.

PS: As I write this post I’ve read in the press that Social Security has taken a further 8.7 billion from the Reserve Fund, but I will leave that reflection for my next blog post.