Demographic growth in Poland since mid 90’s have not change fundamentally. There are clearly seen negative rates of natural growth and therefore total population in Poland is slowly but continuously decreasing. The main reason for this situation is decrease in birth rates which reached about 35% during last
15 years while the death rates have been continuously at the same level. According to GUS estimation the population of Poland in 2004 was
38175 thousands of people (16 thousands less than in 2003) which gives 30th position in world’s and 9th in European most populated countries.
The density of 122 inhabitants per km2 in Poland is near to average rates of density of the European Union. In details it is 1105 inhabitants in cities and 50 inhabitants in rural areas. City inhabitants are 61,5% of total population and its share is gradually decreasing.
Observed since 90’s births rate depression is still noticeable and fertility factor which was 1,22 in 2003 and has been lowest for 50 years do not allow for full generation succession. Optimal fertility factor is 2,1-2,15 what means that there are at average 2 children per woman at age of 15-49.
There is observed a constant improvement in life length of Polish nation since 90’s. Without robust changes in deaths conditions of populations the anticipation of life length for boys born in 2003 is 70,5 and for girls is 78,9 years. In comparison to 1990 an average life length of men is 4 years longer and 3,4 year longer in case of women. It is still far behind the averages of other European nations which is 4-5 years longer for women and 6-7 years longer for men. Also the difference between average men and women life length is in Poland above 8 years in comparison to 5-6 year in other European countries.
As a result of described above demographic changes there is a rapid change of number of children and teenagers (below 17 years old) and their share in total population has decreased to 22% nowadays (30% in 1990). In opposite the number of people older than 65 years has increased to about 13% (10% in 1990). This means that there are 60 people in non-production age for every 100 people in production age.
The population in Poland in compare to other European nation is still relatively young in demographic meaning. But the general trend is toward population getting older and older.
There have been made some researches abort demographic trends and they show that decrease in fertility factor is not finished process by now. There are many reasons for this situation including lack of policies supporting families, hard social and economic conditions to live for young generations and difficulties in finding job. That is why we can expect further decrease of fertility factor what can be seen together with estimated life-length in table below.