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Estimating Demographic Change and Expenditure Pressures in Ireland over the Medium-Term: Preliminary Analysis

Estimating Demographic Change and Expenditure Pressures in Ireland over the Medium-Term: Preliminary Analysis

Summary

Estimating Demographic Change and Expenditure Pressures in Ireland over the Medium-Term: Preliminary Analysis

The Irish population, which currently ranks as Europe’s youngest, is expected to grow fast and become older. Increasing trends in resident’s life expectancy and the gradual stabilisation of fertility rates close to replacement levels suggest that we should expect an increasing share of the elderly in Ireland. Population ageing is a welcome development as it means that we live longer. Females born today are expected to live for 82.7 years while males for 78.4 years. Nevertheless, population growth and ageing will eventually translate to a shrinking labour force, higher pressures on those working by those not working, an eroding tax base and greater spending in areas of the public finances, such as pensions, health care provision, and education. This presentation focuses on government spending and presents preliminary work that attempts to quantify the likely pressures on the government finances in Ireland due to population ageing and other demographic trends over the next 50 years.

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