The forecast published by the Cologne Institute for Economic Research (IW) in 2016 expected Germany’s population to reach 83.1 million by 2035. However, this growth will be spread extremely unevenly. On the one hand, over the next two decades Berlin will grow into a city of four million and Hamburg will also increase its population appreciably. On the other hand, a total of seven of Germany’s 16 Länder, or states, most of them in the formerly Communist east, will see a drop in their populations. The demographic pressure on the labour market is growing in all states. Everywhere the ratio of those of working age to the remaining population is declining – thus raising the dependency ratio. In Bremen, Hamburg and Baden-Württemberg, though, this trend has already slowed and by 2025 the ratio in these states will have risen only minimally. In Brandenburg, Thuringia and the Saarland, however, the same year will see considerably more people not of working age for every hundred people in the labour force. With a dependency ratio of 97.2 Schleswig-Holstein is expected to top this table in 2035. Thus although Germany’s overall population will grow, its ageing will nonetheless confront the nation with daunting economic and societal challenges.
Regional Population Development in Germany to 2035
As a result of record immigration in 2015 and the high net immigration projected for subsequent years, the long-expected population decline in Germany has now been postponed until 2035.
- Philipp Deschermeier ·
- IW-Trends No. 5 ·
- 20 September 2017