With Reference to Specific Countries, Describe and Explain the Social and Economic Implications of Top Heavy and Broad Based Population Structure

Topics: Population, Demography, Aging Pages: 3 (1044 words) Published: March 8, 2008
"With reference to specific countries, describe and explain the social and economic implications of top heavy and broad based population structure"

Over the last few decades, population pyramids of countries have changed in shape staggeringly and rapidly. Broad base, narrow topped pyramids display evidence of high birth rates and high death rates, this usually occurs in less economically developed countries. Pyramids showing a roughly equal distribution throughout the age groups are more likely to be MEDCs; this type of structure would be at stage 4, which means that the birth and death rate is reasonably low. New Zealand, for example has this type of population pyramid. Socially and economically, problems present itself when there are many elderly people in a country. New Zealand, in a few decades will possibly fully experience these types of problems, as you can see in the diagram, in the age group 25-29, there will be a large number of old people. As said earlier, New Zealand is a MEDC, which means that there is better health care, diet and lifestyle. The population's life expectancy is increasing. This will impact the society financially in a way that the taxes will have to be doubled in order to pension the old or just to keep them alive. The common retiring age is about 65 and in most countries, the government pays for the next 30-40 years of your life. The young and working population pay the taxes. This leaves us with a dependency ratio of 53.8. For every 100 people working there are 53.8 dependent on them. Assuming that the number of old people will be increasing over the years, taxes will also be expected to rise. Large numbers of additional births or settling migrants would be needed to maintain the dependency ratios of the current population. An increase of institutions or care centres for the old means that more young, able people are needed to provide these services. This will be much time consumption. If most of the country's population is...

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