12 October 2011

In Russia, a Demographic Crisis and Worries for Nation's Future
The Atlantic - USA
To a non-expert like me, the Russian demographic story is fascinating, not just because of its national and geopolitical implications but because it is about both low birth rates and high death rates. Male life expectancy in Russia today is approximately 60 years, or at least 15 years less than in most industrialized nations. It has been oft-remarked that many developed nations now have declining birth rates because of job opportunities for women. But Russia's low birth rates are due to economic problems, and together with high death rates caused by poor health, these factors make Russian's demographic problems striking. Together these have led to a decline in Russian population from 148.6 million in 1993 after the breakup of the Soviet Union, to 146 million at the beginning of the 21st century, to somewhere bewteen 139 and 143 million today. The UN Population Division estimated several years ago that Russian population in the year 2025 -- one year after President Putin would complete two six-year terms -- would continue to decline dramatically, settling in a range from 121 million to 136 million.,…(11 October 2011)

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