Greece’s population shrank last year at the fastest rate the Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) has recorded since 1932.
With the exception of the period from 1940 to 1955, for which ELSTAT does not have complete figures, there has never been a population drop of 46,000 people in one year. The second worst year was 2019, when births lagged deaths by 40,000.
There are more negative data in the ELSTAT statistics, as the 132,000 deaths recorded last year constitute the worst ever record in Greece. The approximately 85,600 births matched the previous low, set in 2019.
Figures for deaths last year are affected not only by the pandemic but also the problems citizens faced in gaining access to healthcare, while 2020 was also the 10th consecutive year when the balance of births and deaths was negative.
Births have been in constant decline since the country entered the bailout mechanism in 2010: Before that births averaged at 117,000-118,000. They then fell below 100,000 in 2012 and under 90,000 in 2016, according to data supplied by the Labor Ministry.
This year the data so far point to the population shrinking another 45,000.