DEMOGRAPHIC POLICY, Bases of demographic policy, Demographic...


Demographic Policy Basics

Director of the Institute for Demographic Research Igor Ivanovich Beloborodoye defines the demographic policy as a set of measures taken by the state with the aim to influence the regime of population reproduction in a given direction. In a broader sense, demographic policy - is a set of goals, measures and means proposed and implemented by state institutions and public organizations aimed at changing the existing demographic situation. The objects of the demographic policy can be either the population of the country as a whole or individual regions, and socio-demographic groups whose reproduction regime needs substantial adjustment. The purpose of the demographic policy is to influence the reproduction of the population in accordance with the tasks set for socio-economic development and preserving the integrity of the state. To achieve the goal of demographic policy, the whole system of state and social management of demographic processes must function.

There are three main directions in demographic policy:

1) health - improving health and increasing the life expectancy of the population;

2) Family - the regulation of fertility and the preservation of the family as a social institution;

3) migration - regulation of migration processes.

According to the domestic demographer Alexander Yakovlevich Kvashi, the demographic policy can be both active and passive. The active demographic policy is characterized by a desire to change the existing demographic situation, for passive - maintaining its stability. The basis of the demographic policy is the definition of the goal and the main directions of demographic development, the development of measures and means to achieve the goals. In accordance with the purpose of the demographic policy, the main objectives formulate the tasks and justify the priorities. Among the priority tasks can be assigned the following: increasing the birth rate, preserving the family institution, reducing mortality, increasing life expectancy, adjusting the migration balance.

To determine the purpose and objectives of population policy, a scientifically developed concept and program of action is needed. Conceptually designed goal of the demographic policy appears as the country's demographic development strategy , and the developed demographic policy program is like tactics of changing the demographic situation. The demographic policy program is a set of activities that will help to realize the goals and objectives formulated in the concept. The activities proposed in the program can be of three types: administrative and legal, financial and economic and information-psychological. The development of the strategy and tactics of demographic policy requires a scientific analysis of the existing demographic situation and the identification of trends in the dynamics of demographic development in the country. For the effective implementation of the demographic policy, political will, scientific justification, sufficient funding, information support, control over the implementation of decisions are needed.

Demographic Policy in Foreign Countries

In most countries, the priority direction of the demographic policy is to regulate the birth rate and preserve the family as a social institution. In the 1950's and 1960's. world population policy was focused on solving the emerging global problem of the demographic explosion-overpopulation of the planet. During this period, the population of Asia, Africa and Latin America grew rapidly - from 2 to 4% per year. Fear of a demographic explosion has sharpened attention to the problems of resource provision for the future population and its resettlement.

Since the 1970s. the focus of world demographic policy was the problem of a sharp drop in the birth rate in economically developed countries. Currently, in more than 60 countries around the world, the birth rate does not provide even simple reproduction of the population. About half of the world's population lives in these states. At the same time, in 20 countries the birth rate for more than 20 years is much below the level of simple reproduction. Between 1970 and 2010, the global total fertility rate decreased from 4.3 to 2.7 children. In economically developed countries, the total fertility rate reached 1.6 children. At the same time, in 26 developing countries out of 150, the birth rate is five or more children in one woman of reproductive age.

In recent years, most countries have implemented a policy of birth control. As a rule, in Asian countries, which are threatened by a demographic explosion, population policies are focused on reducing fertility. In Western European countries, which are threatened by the demographic crisis, population policy is oriented towards increasing the birth rate.

The need for a demographic policy aimed at reducing fertility in the People's Republic of China arose in the mid-1950s. due to the rapid increase in the population, beginning in 1949, when the population of the republic was 42 million more. The rapid growth of the population led to the fact that today in China, according to statistics, more than 1360 million people live. (every fifth inhabitant of the Earth).

The first campaigns to limit the birth rate in China took place in 1956-1958 and 1961-1965. Since 1970, the demographic policy aimed at reducing the birth rate is carried out under the slogan "one married couple - one child". An exception are small ethnic minorities, who are allowed to have two or three children. To implement the one child policy in China, the age limit for marriage was raised and a requirement was established to register documents for a special medical examination during registration, in which it was confirmed that the bride and groom did not have hereditary diseases. Those with such diseases were found to be prohibited from having children or were offered sterilization. Women who had abortions were given paid leave.

Monthly allowances in China began to be paid only for a single child. Families with one child had advantages in finding a job and providing housing. Parents, who have only one child - a girl, enjoyed a privileged medical care. Decent leave and payment of medical expenses for the second child did not apply. For those who gave birth to the second and subsequent children, fines were established in the amount of 2 to 20 thousand dollars, they withdrew payments received for the first child, they were deprived of all the benefits that were intended in connection with the birth of the first child. As a result, the policies of one child in China, the total fertility rate declined from 4.7 in 1973 to 1.8 in 2000. The traditional preference for giving birth to boys led to the fact that today according to statistics in China, one girl has three boys and as a result - ; shortage of brides .

Currently, the population of India is more than 1.22 billion people. (1/6 of the inhabitants of the globe). The total fertility rate in India is 3.1 children (higher than in modern China almost twice). After the 1971 census showed that in 20 years the population of India increased by one and a half times, as the main method of reducing high birth rate, the government chose sterilization, which was originally carried out voluntarily, and men from the poorest were offered money for this. In 1976, an attempt was made to introduce a law on forced sterilization of men with three children.

During the period from 1974-1975 to 1976-1977, the number of sterilization operations increased from 1354 thousand to 8,261 thousand. As a result, in India the fertility rate dropped from 45% in 1970 to 35.3 % in 1980. For such a political solution to the demographic problem, Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1983 became the winner of the United Nations Population Award. However, such a rigid approach to the solution of excessive fertility led to the demand of the public to abolish the law of coercion for sterilization. The consequence was the defeat of the ruling party, the Indian National Congress. Returning to power, this party led the national population policy in 2000, focused on improving the family's well-being, improving the medical care of mothers and children, and limiting the age limit for marriage of girls to 18 years. In recent years, voluntary sterilization campaigns have been carried out by the Government in Malaysia, Nepal and Pakistan as part of a family planning program.

France, one of the first European countries, expressed concern about the decline in fertility at the end of the XIX century. In 1896 the French statistician and demographer J. Bertillon founded the National Union for the increase in the number of French people. In 1920, the Higher Council on Births was established, in 1921 - the Federation of Unions of Large Families, in 1939 - the Higher Committee on Population Issues. In 1945, at the initiative of the French President Charles de Gaulle (1890-1970) and under his leadership, the Higher Advisory Committee began to function on the problems of the population and the family. In 1920, France adopted a law prohibiting abortion, but authorizing the sale of contraceptives. In 1939, the Family Code was adopted, and in 1975 - the law on the resolution of abortions during the first 10 weeks of pregnancy.

In modern France, as in many European countries, fertility is stimulated through the system of child allowances. With the increase in the number of children in the family, child allowances are substantially increased. Thus, at the birth of the first child, a one-time benefit is paid in the amount of 260% of the mother's basic salary, for each subsequent - 717%. The term of maternity leave is set at 16 weeks, but at the birth of the third child it increases to 26 weeks. Single mothers are guaranteed a minimum income during the entire period of pregnancy and the first three years of life of the child. At the birth of the child, the family is provided with housing benefits, as well as part of the loan taken for the establishment of the household. When the fourth child is born, the loan is repaid by 90%. The payment of income tax depends on the number of children in the family. There are substantial annual reimbursements for family expenses for the education of children and a relatively low payment for the child's stay in public and private pre-school educational institutions throughout the day.

Today, France allocates about 12-13% of GDP for material support of families and occupies the second place (after Ireland) in Europe according to the birth rate. The increase in the population of modern France by 4/5 is provided by natural population growth, while in most EU countries the increase in the number by 3/4 is due to migration.

In the demographic policy of some Western European countries, special measures are used to increase the birth rate. For example, in Austria, in determining the benefits allocated, not the income of the family is taken into account, but the number of children in it. Assistance to families is given out of tax revenues and from public funds financed by entrepreneurs. Students are paid benefits before they reach the age of 27. In Italy and Belgium, allowances for students are paid up to 25 years. In addition, in Belgium they increase depending on the age of the child: for 14-year-old allowances, three times more than for a child under four years old. In Greece, allowances for the fourth and fifth child are 12-18 times higher than at the first. In Sweden, family benefits are paid to everyone, including immigrants. Fathers, as well as mothers, can receive 60 days a year of paid leave to take care of their child and 10 days in connection with the birth of a child. In the UK, a large amount of material assistance to large families led to the emergence of a generation of people who, without working, live off child benefits.

The demographic policy of most countries includes the following measures: on the safety of motherhood, accessibility and improvement of medical care for mothers and children's health, rendering material assistance to large families and single mothers. Thanks to the implementation of these measures, between 1990 and 2010, it was possible to reduce infant and child mortality from 12.5 million to 9 million. Currently, this direction of population policy is a priority for 70 countries. In 87 states, measures to reduce the death rate from the spread of the HIV/AIDS infection, of which 28 million people have died in the world since 1981 and 2008, are the paramount in the demographic policy, and 33 million people. remain incurable.

More and more economically developed countries include in the programs of their demographic policy the need for introducing selective migration. Governments are concerned about the sharp increase in illegal migration, especially during times of economic crisis. If, for example, Australia, Sweden, Estonia agree to increase the flow of labor migrants, Denmark, the Netherlands, France want to reduce the migration flow to their countries. Immigration quotas have been introduced in the US, Canada and many European countries.

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