October 30, 2023 -Barbados has been identified as grappling with a significant population decline, reaching what has been described as crisis levels.
The nation’s Prime Minister, Mia Amor Mottley, recently unveiled the alarming statistics, emphasizing the urgency of addressing the issue to safeguard the country’s future.
Mottley raised concerns about the significant decline over the weekend at the 84th Annual Conference of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) held at Daryll Jordan Secondary School.
The unfolding demographic challenge sees the Caribbean island wrestling with a diminishing workforce, essential for its growth and sustainability in facing global challenges.
Aging and economy
Central to the Prime Minister’s concerns is the rising aged population.
The demographic shift paints a challenging scenario where a shrinking working-age population must support an increasingly elderly populace.
Mottley noted that a tangible consequence of this shift is seen in its impact on the nation’s coffers, with fewer people contributing taxes at a time when robust public financing is crucial.
Barbados’ population vs other Caribbean countries
A historical glance at demographic trends brings the crisis into sharper focus.
Prime Minister Mottley mentioned that in a cross-comparison with neighboring nations such as the Bahamas and Belize, Barbados’ population trajectory shows concerning stagnation.
Whereas Barbados boasted a population of 200,000 in 1950, compared to 80,000 in both Bahamas and Belize, it now finds itself lagging with a population of 269,000 against their 400,000.