A British Baby Boom: we should aim for a population of 100m in the next two decades

Jan 14, 2022 by

by Tom Harwood, CapX:

Legislators should be in no doubt that we are hurtling towards a demographic crisis. ONS figures released just yesterday reveal that the number of people aged over the age of 85 will almost double in the next 25 years. More significantly still, there will be 59,000 more deaths than births over the next decade.

A shrinking number of young people and a growing number of old people. Fewer people at work and more people in need of pensions. A shrinking tax base and a growing expenditure bill. As CapX’s editor-in-chief Robert Colvile put it last year, ‘Britain is turning into an elderly care system with a state attached’.

Less production and more state spending per person is set to make the UK less nimble, less able to weather international storms, less innovative, and frankly less relevant.

With this looming, crippling set of budgetary obligations, coupled with the rocketing population growth in Asia and Africa, the UK and our allies risk being relegated on the world stage. As China grows to become the largest economy, few are ready for the seismic shift already underway. The shift to a world no longer dominated by the United States. Few have considered the realities of living in a under the economic thumb of a new, much less agreeable hegemon.

But it’s not just concern for global influence or indeed national debt that should concern us. The quality of life and opportunities available to the people of this country should be put above everything else.

And the blunt truth of the matter is that families want more children. In recent years the gap between ‘lifetime fertility intentions’ and the number of children families actually have across the UK, Europe, and the US has plummeted. Across the West, families want more children than they end up having. This is a sad and sorry situation.

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