*File photo
*File photo

The Cabinet Office announced today the release of Bermuda’s Population Projections 2010-2020 Report by the Department of Statistics.

In commenting on the report’s findings, the Premier, the Hon. L. Craig Cannonier, JP, MP said, “Key findings of the report indicate that Bermuda’s population is projected to decline for the first time with a 4% decrease between 2010 and 2020. This is largely due to net emigration (i.e. emigration exceeding immigration) and slowing natural population growth as a result of a declining birth rate. Thus Bermuda’s resident population is likely to drop from 64,129 people in 2010 to 61,566 people in 2020.”

Bermuda’s Population Projections 2010-2020 Report provides an overview of the methodology used to develop the population projections, trends observed for fertility and mortality rates, and future implications for Bermuda. Single-year data tables are also shown for the projected population by sex and age.

The Premier added, “We believe that this information is particularly relevant as the Government as well as our stakeholders will use population projections to aid in future planning and policy formulation for the development of services and programmes.”

Projections of the total population by five-year age group and sex extend from 1 July 2010 to 1 July 2020.  They take into account census and post-2010 patterns to provide a new scenario for the future.

All users are cautioned to recognize that population projections are not predictions or forecasts. They are illustrations of how the structure, size and characteristics of Bermuda’s population would change if certain assumptions on fertility, mortality and migration are held true over the projection period.

Therefore users must take into account both the assumptions and limitations noted in the Report. The projections should be used with full recognition that there is no certainty that any of the assumptions will be realized.

A summary of some additional highlights contained in the report are as follows:

• Bermuda is expected to continue aging substantially: 

•The median age of the population that was 41 years in 2010 could climb to 46 years by 2020. Median age is the point where exactly one half of the population is older, and the other half is younger.

• The proportion of seniors (65 years and older) could increase from 14% in 2010 to 20% by 2020. 

• The total dependency ratio is projected to rise from 43 in 2010 to 51 by 2020. This means that in 2020 there will be 51 children (0-14 years) and seniors (65 years and older) for every 100 people of working age (15-64 years). The total dependency ratio links the number of people defined as dependents to the working-age population, and therefore estimates society’s capacity to maintain the quality of life for children and seniors per 100 persons aged 15-64.

The Department of Statistics advised that a summary can only provide a limited view of the extensive information available in the Population Projections Report. Members of the public can download a copy of Bermuda’s Population Projections 2010-2020 from www.statistics.gov.bm.