The Hauts-de-France region could lose 10% of its population by 2070

The Hauts-de-France region could lose 10% of its population by 2070

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According to an INSEE study published on Thursday 24 November, the population in the Hauts-de-France is expected to decrease by 2070. (©WL/Lille actu)

10% less population by 2070 in the Hauts-de-France. Thursday 24 November 2022, theNational Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE)has published a projection of the population in Hauts-de-France by 2070. For this study, the institute relied on data collected in 2018. Several aspects emerged from this projection.

A smaller population

The main point that seems to emerge from the study is that Hauts-de-France will have fewer inhabitants in 2070 than in 2018. The region would lose 10% of its current population. This represents almost 600,000 people.

This decrease in the population would be explained by a lower number of births in the area than the number of deaths. This is called natural balance and would be negative. A negative migratory balance would be added to this negative natural balance, i.e. there would be more people leaving the region than those settling there. The Hauts-de-France region would be the only one to combine these two characteristics.

In 2018, the region was the 3And most populous in France. In 2070 the region would lose its place on the podium and would finish in 5And position of the rank.

An aging population

In 2070, the number of people over the age of 65 is expected to increase increase by 38%. This phenomenon is explained by the increase in life expectancy predicted by the study. This predicts that in 2070, women will live 4.9 years longer and men 8.4 years longer.

At the same time, the population under 65 is expected to decrease by 20%. Despite the aging of the population in Hauts-de-France, the region would still remain the youngest in France after Ile-de-France. In 2070, the average age in the region would be 45 against 48.5 at the national level.

Departmental specifics

However, the situation is not uniform throughout the region and each department has its own particularities:

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  • noise. It is the department that would lose the least number of inhabitants in the entire region. The Oise would lose only 4% of its population by 2070. This would be explained by the youth of its population and its proximity to Ile-de-France.
  • North. The department is expected to lose 7% of its population but its natural balance is the only one in the region to remain positive.
  • Pas de Calais. This would be the department most marked by an aging population. It is expected to experience a 15% population decline.
  • Sum. Thanks to the attractiveness of its coastal area, the department would be able to maintain a positive migration balance. However, it would not be sufficient to offset the negative natural balance.
  • Aisne. This is the department most affected by the decline in the number of inhabitants. Aisne is projected to lose 18% of its population in 2070 compared to 2018.

Other scenarios discussed

To make this projection, INSEE assumed that fertility would remain stable, life expectancy would increase, and so on. each year 70,000 people would settle in the region. With these data, the institute arrived at a so-called central projection.

By changing some factors such as fertility or life expectancy, the results can be very different. INSEE has therefore also envisaged a so-called “high population” scenario and a so-called “low population” scenario.

In the “high population” scenario, the Hauts-de-France region would have an additional 209,000 inhabitants by 2070. In the “low population” scenario, it would lose up to 1,366,000 inhabitants.

Unknown data that could have an impact

In this projection, several aspects are not taken into account. Among them there is the impact of climate change which could make some regions more difficult to live in than the current ones.

Furthermore, the study cannot take into account measures that could be taken by the authorities to make their regions more attractive. All of this unknown data could have a significant impact on the demographics of the regions. It is therefore necessary to study this projection with tweezers.

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