Chisinau - Demographic Research Centre, in partnership with UNFPA, United Nations Population Fund in Moldova, launched the Demographic Barometer " Demographic dividend - how do we correlate the economic development with the demographic trends?"
According to the study, there exists significant human capital in Moldova that can ensure sustainable economic growth of the country. That, despite the fact that the number of Moldovan population is continuously decreasing for the second decade consecutively. The high percentage of working age population in framework of the total population creates the conditions demographic dividend, which represents an important potential for national economic growth. The harnessing of demographic dividend is ensured by the promotion of active policies aimed at strengthening human capital and labour market development.
Demographic dividend occurs when the share of the working age population in the framework of the total population exceeds 55%. Moldova demographic dividend occurred after 2000, when the share of working age population began to grow and reached 61%. According to the results of the Demographic Barometer, Moldova has a potential labour force large enough to ensure the economic growth. In this regard, raising the retirement age extends the period of demographic dividend, along with the investments in youth health, education and employment.
Rita Columbia, UNFPA Representative in Moldova declared that "In order to capitalize on the demographic dividend, the Government, the civil society and the development partners of Moldova, together with UNFPA, have to prioritize the investment in young people, their health, including sexual and reproductive health, education and employment. The objective of harnessing the demographic dividend should become the cornerstone for the revision of the Moldova 2020 Strategy, which underpins the implementation of the Association Agreement with EU and achievement of the SDGs".
Presenting the survey results, Tatiana Tabac, the Demographic Research Centre researcher, pointed out that the demographic dividend in Moldova is undercapitalized:
- the population employment rate is about 40%. 27% of young people aged 15-29 are not in employment, nor in education, this indicator being two times higher than the EU average;
- emigration flows are still high, which reduce the volume and demographic dividend period. Currently, the migration flows are intensifying among the young people between the ages of 25-29;
- mortality among the working age population remains high, leading to immediate loss of human potential and the demographic dividend.
Olga Gagauz, deputy director of the National Institute of Economic Research said that the aim of the Demographic Barometer is to provide evidence that even if Moldova registers a decrease in population number, the actual age structure of the population and during the next two decades is favourable and can facilitate economic growth. The number and proportion of working age population in the total population exceeds 55%, therefore policy interventions are required to harness the demographic dividend potential.