How many people get old

The social situation in Germany

In order to be able to make statements about the future population development and the age structure, the Federal Statistical Office has calculated several scenarios with different assumptions regarding the birth rate, life expectancy and net migration. According to the Federal Statistical Office, demographic aging in Germany is not just a topic of the future, it is already well advanced.

Facts

The data provided by the Federal Statistical Office show that demographic change in Germany is already well advanced and it is highly likely that it will continue in the future. The proportion of the population under 20 years of age fell from 29.7 to 18.4 percent between 1970 and 2017. At the same time, the proportion of people aged 67 and over rose from 11.1 to 19.0 percent.

Assuming moderate changes in the birth rate and life expectancy up to 2060 as well as a positive net migration of an average of 221,000 people per year (see "Terms, methodological notes or reading aids"), the proportion of 67-year-olds and older will continue to increase sharply - from 2018 to 2060 from 19.1 to 27.4 percent. While the proportion of under 20-year-olds does not decrease any further (2018: 18.4 percent / 2060: 18.0 percent), the proportion of 20 to under 67-year-olds increases from 62.5 to 54 between 2018 and 2060, 6 percent off.

In all nine main variants of the 14th coordinated population projection by the Federal Statistical Office, the proportion of people of working age (20 to 66 years of age) will decrease significantly in the next two decades and will be between 55 and 56 percent in 2037. The proportion of 67-year-olds and older, on the other hand, will increase in all main variants. A particularly steep increase is expected by 2040.

The number of people aged 67 and over rose by 54 percent between 1990 and 2018, from 10.4 to 15.9 million. Over the next 20 years, that number will grow by another 5 to 6 million to at least 20.9 million. The number of very old people has also changed significantly: between 1970 and 2017, the number of 80-year-olds and older rose from 1.2 to 5.2 million and their share of the total population increased from 1.9 to 6.2 percent. According to the variant considered here, the number of 80-year-olds and older will continue to increase until 2050: The 9.7 million 80-year-olds and older will then have a share of 12.1 percent of the population (2060: 8.8 million . / 11.3 percent).

The total population increased after German reunification, mainly due to immigration from the former socialist states of Europe and the former Soviet Union. From 2002 the positive net migration and with it the population decreased. Due to the higher net immigration since 2011, the population initially increased slowly. In the course of the extraordinarily strong increase in immigration since 2014, a total of 2.6 million predominantly young people came to Germany on balance between 2014 and 2017 - 37 percent of them were under 20 years old and 53 percent were between the ages of 20 and 39. In 2018, net immigration was 400,000. The population has increased accordingly since 2014 and was 82.9 million in 2018.

Again based on moderate changes in the birth rate and life expectancy up to 2060 and a positive net migration of an average of 221,000 people per year, the population will rise to 83.7 million by 2024 and then steadily decrease to 78.2 million by 2060.

Assuming a long-term comparatively high net migration (average from 1990 to 2018: plus 311,000 per year) and otherwise the same assumptions, the population in 2060 will be 83.0 million. Assuming a long-term comparatively low net migration (average from 1955 to 1989: 147,000 per year) and otherwise the same assumptions, the population in 2060 will be 74.4 million. The assumptions about net migration therefore have a very strong influence on the population - the difference is up to 8.6 million people in relation to the year 2060.

Without net immigration, the population in Germany would have been shrinking for a long time, since since 1972 the number of deaths has exceeded the number of births every year and the so-called natural population balance is negative. Without net immigration and with a moderate development in the frequency of births and life expectancy, the birth deficit would increase from 167,000 to 530,000 per year between 2018 and 2054 and then decrease slightly by 2060. With this purely model calculation, the population would be 65.2 million in 2060 - 17.7 million fewer than in 2018.

Data Source

Federal Statistical Office: Population of Germany by 2060, results of the 14th coordinated population projection

Terms, methodological notes or reading aids

The dates mentioned in the text relate to one of the nine main variants of the 14th coordinated Population projection of the Federal Statistical Office. All variants describe the development up to 2060. In the selected variant, it is assumed that the annual birth rate will stabilize at the level of 1.55 children per woman and the final number of children per woman will rise to 1.6. Life expectancy at birth will increase by 6 years for boys and just under 5 years for girls to 84.4 and 88.1 years, respectively. After all, with this variant, the migration balance decreases continuously between 2018 and 2026 and then remains constant at around 206,000. In the period from 2019 to 2060, an average of 221,000 more people would immigrate to Germany than emigrate each year. This corresponds to the average net migration between 1955 and 2018 (variant 2: G2-L2-W2).

The long-term Population projections are not predictions, but provide "if-then statements". They start from the current age structure and implement the assumptions described in each case.

For the individual variants see: Population of Germany by 2060, results of the 14th coordinated population projection, main variants 1 to 9.

Information on the subject natural population development and net migration in Germany and Europe you'll find here...