Russian officials are panicking about the possible “extinction” of the country – but not because of anything related to Ukraine war.
According to a new report from Kremlin-backed Russian news outlet Moskovskij Komsomolets, a new scheme launched on September 1 aims to increase the birth rate in certain cities because the demographic of the country has become “alarming”. The current birth rate in Russia is around 1.5 births per every woman in the country, placing it 190th in the world.
The figures, which were last released in 2020, show a 0.2% drop on the previous year, and are far below the average worldwide rate of 2.27 children per woman. The new scheme has been rolled out to the most problematic areas of Novgorod, Penza and Tambov, which have the worst birth rates in the entire country – however no details of exactly how the scheme will work have been made public.
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Speaking to MK, demographic politician Yuri Krupnov said: “The positive thing is that the regions with the most difficult demographic situation have been identified and the goals of changing the situation have been declared. But given the fact that there is no general understanding of demography in society, it is not clear how this can be done.
“While the pilot project is fairly confidential information, there are no methodological recommendations. I can’t yet imagine what creative things the government will offer for these regions.”
Russia's current population currently stands at 143 million – although this figure was released pre-war, and in 2021. Shockingly, Krupnov expects this figure to half within the next 70 years.
He said: “Mum and dad will go to another world, and instead of the two of them, one and a half people will remain. If the situation does not change, by the end of the century there will be approximately 70–80 million left in Russia.
“We have 1.5 children in the family, but we need 2.5. It is necessary to set a task at all levels of power: to reach this level within 20 years, let's say by 2045.
“To do this, we need to restore the family – today there are as many divorces in the country as there are marriages.”
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