The population of the Old Continent will keep getting older, since in coming decades Europeans will live longer and have fewer children. Predictions state that the European Union in 2060 will have somewhat more citizens than now, but that they will be considerably older than now. Demographic trends also mean that from the mid-century onward for every two working citizens there will be one pensioner, compared to four-on-one as it is now. In the long term, a decrease in the share of public spending on pensions in the gross domestic product is predicted for most EU member states (15 countries) as a result of pension reform.
The European Commission Report “Aging 2015”, containing projections for the 2013-60 period, represents a response to the need to seriously consider the effects of an aging population on the European social model, already indicated by the European Commission and the European Council.
The report makes the prediction that the EU population will increase by nearly 5% by 2050, to 526 million, and then will start decreasing, so that by 2060 the Union will have 523 million citizens. In 2013, the EU had 507 million citizens. It is noted that the population growth will be achieved only with the predicted inflow of migrants to the EU.
Demographers predict the fertility rate in the EU to grow, but remain under the rate of natural change of generations, while simultaneously a large and constant increase in the expected life span at birth will be noted.
The expected life span at birth for men is expected to increase during the observed period by 7.1 years, to 84.8 years in 2060, while for women a 6 year increase is counted on, to 89.1.
Likewise, the inflow of migrants to the EU is expected to continue, with predictions of increase to 1.36 million by 2040, then dropping to 1.03 million people by 2060.
As a result of demographic trends, by 2060 the coefficient of 65 and older against those between 15 and 64 in the EU will increase from 27.8% to 50.1%. This means that in the EU, instead of four persons able to work for every one over 65, there will be two persons of working age.
Considering the projections of the population, work force and unemployment rate, the employment rate in the EU (20-64 years of age) will increase from 68.5% in 2013 to 72.2% in 2023 and 75% in 2060. Similar results are expected in the Euro Zone, with predictions of employment rates for 2060 at 74.7%.