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Germany population growth to remain flat, study shows

April 9, 2024

A new study shows Germany's population is expected to grow by only 0.6% by 2040, with large regional disparities. Concurrently, the number of working age people is expected to drop below 50% overall across the country.

Two women walk along the road in a large crowd of people
28% of Germany's population will be 65 or older by 2040, a study shows Image: Michael Gstettenbauer/IMAGO

A study released by the Bertelsmann Foundation on Tuesday showed that Germany is expected to see a slight 0.6% increase in population by 2040.

The forecast is based on births, deaths and migration provided by the Federal Statistical Office.

Geographic disparities 

The largest population increase is expected in the southwestern state of Baden-Württemberg with growth of 4.6%. The population of Berlin is expected to grow by 5.8%, and Hamburg, Germany's second-largest city, is projected to have 3.5% growth. 

Conversely, the population in the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt is expected to see a 12.3% decrease in population. 

Population shrinkage is also projected in the eastern states of Thuringia with 10.9% and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania 7.3%. 

Germany getting older 

Ralph Heck, chairman of the Bertelsmann Foundation, said that increasing aging in German society is evident in almost all states."

The report showed that the percentage of people in Germany aged 65 and above will increase from 22% in 2020 to 28% in 2040. 

The proportion of working age people will fall from 54 to 48% in the same time frame, and the proportion of younger age groups in the overall population will remain almost unchanged.

"Targeted strategies are now needed to develop a suitable infrastructure for the older generations and to overcome the economic challenges that arise," said Heck. 

Who's going to care for Germany's aging population?

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ac\wmr (dpa, KNA)