Cuba's birthrate has been decreasing steadily for years provoking a population decrease. Aging and reduced fertility are the chief causes of the continued decline in the Cuban population. "> Cuba's birthrate has been decreasing steadily for years provoking a population decrease. Aging and reduced fertility are the chief causes of the continued decline in the Cuban population. ">

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The Cuban birthrate increased by 8.2 percent in the first half of 2009 compared to the same period last year, which has halted a decline in the island’s population, official media said Tuesday.

The director of Cuba’s Center for Population and Development Studies, Juan Carlos Alfonso, said that some 4,200 more babies were born in that period than in the first half of 2008, which signified “a lesser decline in the number of inhabitants.”

Citing other factors influencing the population decrease, Alfonso said that the number of deaths rose while “migratory movements” remained “unchanged.”

Data from the National Statistics Office, or ONE, show that in 2008 the number of births on the island grew by more than 10,000 compared with 2007, but the process of a decrease in the population continued.

Cuba had 11.24 million inhabitants last December, is forecast to have lost 100,000 by 2025 and will be below 11 million by 2032.

Studies by ONE and the Latin American and Caribbean Demographic Center indicate that aging and reduced fertility are the chief causes of the continued decline in the Cuban population.

By 2025 some 2.9 million Cubans will be over 60, a million more than at present, making this the oldest population in Latin America, with the consequent impact on productivity and the cost of pensions and health services.

Source: Herald Tribune

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