Greek demographic collapse – 3 cities the size of Heraklion ‘lost’ in a decade

31 March 2021
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Greece is facing an unprecedented demographic crisis, as its population in 2050 is projected to have fallen to 9 million, according to official data from the country’s Statistical Services (ELSTAT).

To put the magnitude of the catastrophe into perspective, Greece has lost the equivalent of 3 cities the size of Heraklion in the past decade (464,583)or 60% of the population of Thessaloniki, the second-largest city in the country, while there was a decline in 2020 by over 40,473.

The data showed that Greece was one of the countries with the biggest demographic problem in the European Union.

Indicative of the urgency of the situation was the statement by the Vice-President of the European Commission for Democracy and Demography in the EU, Dubravka Suica, who in an interview with the Greek newspaper “Ta Nea” notes that Greece is one of the European Union countries for which estimates predict a reduction in population. The data presented were not shocking since the Commission ranks Greece in the group of countries that will see “major reductions of 21% -27% in the population”, estimating that in 2070 only 8.5 million people will live in Greece.

This situation, however, does not concern the near or distant future, but it has already begun to appear in the present. According to the official data of ELSTAT, the population of our country has already decreased, even marginally, since, on January 1, 2020, the permanent population was estimated at 10,718,565 people (5,215,488 men and 5,503,077 women), when last year it was 10,724,599 people. The decrease is of the order of 0.06%, however, it is a clear sign that the population has entered a declining course since the birth/death ratio is not even able to maintain the population of the country.

According to ELSTAT data, net migration is estimated at 34,439 people, which corresponds to the difference between 129,459 incoming and 95,020 outgoing migrants. In 2018, net migration was estimated at 16,440 people (119,489 incoming and 103,049 outgoing migrants). It should be noted that the incoming immigration data also includes people who were in our country on 1/1/2020 due to the refugee crisis.

Meanwhile, Turkey, in contrast, saw a population increase of 909,452 people reaching 84,339,067 people.

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