Today.Az » World news » Armenia faces lack of younger generation
13 September 2018 [15:15] - Today.Az
By Rashid Shirinov
The rapid depopulation of Armenia, especially of the periphery, continues. Despite the ‘velvet revolution,’ the populism of the government, adoption of some programs and laws aimed at both stimulating the birth rate and preserving the already rare population in the villages and border areas, the Armenian authorities are no longer able to stop the negative trend.
The poverty, unemployment and the resultant inability to feed their families, as well as the threat of an outbreak of hostilities in Nagorno-Karabakh have led to the outflow of young Armenians. Meanwhile, many families who still remain in the country are reluctant to have many children because of the social problems.
Armenian media have recently reported that rural schools in the Shirak region of the country have faced with a severe shortage of first-graders. There are some villages in the region where there were no first-graders at all this year – Krashen, Jradzor, Zarishat and Shagik, – Armenian media note, adding that this problem is due to the low birth rate in the region in 2011-2012. Moreover, there is a high rate of migration in the region – people go to work mainly to Russia and only a small part of them return.
The same situation is observed in many other regions of Armenia. The population of the country is declining at a rapid pace and the government is still unable to stop the process. The official statistics show that some 3,226,000 people lived in the country in 2000, but this figure fell to 2,981,000 million by 2017.
That is, 245,000 people have left Armenia during this period, and these are only official figures. Most likely, the real situation is even worse. Independent experts say that more than 40,000 people annually emigrate from Armenia.
This is the harsh reality of Armenia – the country gets empty because of the doleful economic situation. The unemployment rate in the country is the highest among the CIS countries, making up 19 percent, and new vacancies do not seem to come up in the near future due to the wrong structure of the national economy.
By losing thousands of families every year, Armenia loses its younger generation. Therefore, the demographic situation in the country is going to be even more dreadful in some years – Armenia may find itself being mostly populated with the elderly with a small part of economically active population, and as a result, the economy of the country may completely collapse.