Natal­ity rate warn­ing

Costa Levante News - - NEWS -

By Joe Wick­man CASTEL­LÓN prov­ince’s un­der-16 pop­u­la­tion will drop by 30% in just 15 years, de­mo­graphic pro­jec­tions in­di­cate.

The Va­len­cian in­sti­tute of statis­tics ex­plained when re­leas­ing this in­for­ma­tion that con­tin­ued drops in natal­ity and im­mi­gra­tion have al­ready led to a 2,337 stu­dent drop in the prov­ince this very year.

They go on to es­ti­mate that the fig­ure will fall to just un­der 30,000 by 2031 if no mea­sures are taken to slow it down.

The num­ber of births peaked when the fi­nan­cial cri­sis be­gan, with 7,206 in 2008, and has since de­creased every year un­til reach­ing a new low last year, with 5,098. Rea­sons for this sus­tained drop in­clude the cri­sis it­self, which forces couples to post­pone hav­ing chil­dren un­til their fi­nan­cial sit­u­a­tion im­proves, de­creased fer­til­ity for so­ci­o­log­i­cal rea­sons, a drop in pop­u­la­tion and the fact that nu­mer­ous young for­eign­ers have also elected to leave the coun­try.

While these de­mo­graphic al­ter­ations will neg­a­tively af­fect all ar­eas within the prov­ince, it will send some in­land vil­lages straight into the red, as a lack of youth forces schools and busi­nesses to close, which in turn leads to less couples liv­ing there, so the num­bers worsen, and the cy­cle con­tin­ues.

The Alto Mi­jares, l’Al­ca­latén and Alto Palan­cia dis­tricts within Castel­lón prov­ince are pro­jected to be the most se­verely hit by this neg­a­tive trend.

Castell de Cabres, Castel­lón, the town with the least pop­u­la­tion in the re­gion - 15 in­hab­i­tants

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