We will never be 12 million: Cuba’s demographic situation is worrying

Havana Cuba. – In recent statements to the official press, the deputy head of the National Office of Statistics and Information (ONEI), Juan Carlos Alfonso Fraga, described the demographic situation in Cuba as “alarming”, with an accelerated aging of its population, and a decrease of the working-age population.

the official made it known that at the end of last March the population of the island was 11 million 82,964 inhabitants, and pointed out that “the trend is downward due to low fertility, the negative balance between birth and mortality rates, and the migratory balance external”.

According to statistical estimates made by ONEI, the country will not reach 12 million inhabitants in the coming years, and by 2025 the Cuban population will have decreased, even reaching below 11 million.

Alfonso Fraga reported that in 2022, 95,403 people were born in Cuba, and 120,098 people died, a situation that has marked the demographic status of the Island in recent years.

According to figures that appear in the Statistical Yearbook of Cuba for the year 2021, since 2018 births have been decreasing, and deaths have been increasing in the country. Births were 116,000 people in 2018, 109,000 in 2019, 105,000 in 2020, and only 99,000 in 2021. While deaths were 106,000 people in 2018, 109,000 in 2019, 112,000 in 2020 , and rose to 167,000 in 2021 .

Regarding the global fertility rate, the ONEI deputy chief stated that in our country this indicator reports 1.41 children per woman, below the average to reach the population replacement level, which is 2.1 children per woman. women. This last rate has not been reached in Cuba since 1977.

In this sense, it should be added that the low fertility rate observed in our country is not only due to the legitimate desire of many women to dedicate more time to their working life and, above all, to their professional preparation. It is also due, and to a large extent, to the difficult material conditions existing in the country to bring a new member of the family into the world. Layette items and baby food are scarce here; it is extremely difficult to acquire adequate housing, and often the family income is not enough to raise a second child.

Now it is also worrying that the Cuban population of working age will decrease. It must be remembered, however, that this situation did not exist in Cuba before Castroism took control of the country. Because this was a country of immigrants, and not of emigrants as it is today.

During the Government of the Hundred Days, headed by Ramón Grau San Martín and Antonio Guiteras in 1933, a law had to be promulgated that established that at least 50 percent of the jobs in the country’s entities should be reserved for Cuban workers. . This was due to the large number of Spaniards, Poles, Chinese and West Indians who were looking for work in Cuba.

During Juan Carlos Alfonso’s meeting with the press, it emerged that the Population Census that should have been carried out in 2022 it was postponed to 2025. The explanation offered for the postponement was “the complex economic situation of the country.”

The last census carried out in Cuba was in 2012, and there was much dissatisfaction, caused among other things by the low preparation of the enumerators to adequately capture the data about the population and housing in the country.

The opinions expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the person who issues them and do not necessarily represent the opinion of CubaNet.

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