Baltic states demographic projections are the worst in the EU

Population in all three Baltic states is decreasing and demographic projections are the worst of the European Union.

As Ivars Indans showed in his presentation a the Baltic countries have a record low unemployment figures, which limits the labor market, economic development and investment attraction. In Latvia and Lithuania the situation is even more affected because of  mass emigration. As the author acknowledges, the problem is the lack of labor resources.

The research emphasizes that labor market openness is one of the essential prerequisites for innovative design and technology development. Therefore, the long-term future development is linked with the need for immigrants. It determines not only the demand of market economy, but also the demographics and the aging population problem.

During the research Indans found that, although the number of Latvian migrant workers are not limited, administrative procedure is complex, inconvenient, time consuming and relatively high employer costs. This in turn reduces the domestic enterprises to attract legal workers.

The author of the research recommends  to make the market demand research, to develop the labor force attachment programs, improve the structure of diplomatic work to involve local governments, as well as broaden the understanding of integration.

Indans emphasized  that in the EU Member States there are different models and schemes to attract foreign labor. Most often, each country sets itself the requisite number of immigrants, with preference being given to local and EU or European Economic Area national workforce.

As the author concludes since the restoration of independence in the Baltic countries negative approach to migration policy have been dominated.

The study presentation of Citizenship and Migration Board representatives acknowledged that such academic research is needed, but in practice, and  studies reflect the situation is fundamentally different. At the same time, researchers often reveals a significant and considerable nuances.

While the Latvian Employers’ Confederation of the representatives expressed the hope that the authorities finally start to analyze the industry and their weaknesses in order to anticipate possible scenarios for future labor market. The Confederation maintains that it does not require immediate open and accessible as possible to make the Latvian labor market for migrant workers, but believes that in the near future should be the sectoral studies, thus setting the trend.


One thought on “Baltic states demographic projections are the worst in the EU

  1. That is a sad truth, that the population is decreasing in Baltic States and that people are going away from Baltic countries in order to find a better job and maybe a better life (Population of Estonia: 1,34 m; Latvia: 2,23 m; Lithuania: 3,34 m). There are reasons for that, of course. I think that the main problem is that Baltic countries are considerably poor as long as they do not have a lot of their own natural resources. Another issue is that after The Baltic States joined EU and are about to accept euro money, there is no cheap “eastern european labour” as there was before, that is why many international industrial companies closed their branches in The Baltic countries and opened new ones in Asia. I think the situation will not change before Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania find their own original niche and concentrate on the production and marketing of that particular item (f.e some new invention in the medical industry). Governments should also encourage people to stay instead of going to work abroad: offer some benefits, education, try to develop the sense of patriotism in people and so on.


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