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EU labour force size likely to decrease

  • If current patterns continute, the total size of the EU labour force is projected to decrease during the next four decades. The projected decrease will come from the part of the population with low and middle levels of education. Therefore, the EU's labour force will be smaller and better educated in the future.  | Related megatrends: Work; Education
  • Increasing labour force participation is the most effective way to tackle the adverse effects of an ageing population. Would the EU labour force participation increase strongly over time it could compensate for a large part of the foreseen negative economic consequences related to population ageing. This would be the case in demographic scenarios where either 1) men and women participate in the workforce equally, or 2) the labour-force participation rates of men and women in all EU member states converge gradually to the participation rates in Sweden today. 
  • Over time, Intra-EU mobility could create large population shifts in Europe. The emigration of workers is speeding up the ageing and population decline in eastern Member States of the EU. For example, if the current movements persists, Romania's population would reduce by 30% by 2060 (from 19.9 million in 2015 to 13.8 million in 2060).  | Related megatrends: Migration

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