Demographic change and the labour market in Spain

Dolores Lopez, Universidad de Navarra
Carolina Montoro, Universidad de Navarra
Jose María Aballone, University of Navarra
Patricia Nieto, University of Navarra

In Spain, like in other Western European countries, the demographic change occurring over the last few decades has been accompanied by a population ageing process. The combination of extremely low fertility rates with a considerable increase in life expectancy has given rise to a transformation of the Spanish population age structure. As these new, low-birth rate generations gradually enter the labour market, this ageing process is particularly affecting the working age population. However, over the last few decades, the impact of this ageing process has to some extent been lessened by the considerable increase in the participation of women in the labour market. Another recent factor is the massive influx of immigrants into Spain over the last decade (1998 – 2007), with the foreign population rising from 1% to 9%. This phenomenon has not only led to the rejuvenation of the population, but has also brought about an important transformation of the labour market. This paper will illustrate the impact that this interrelation between demographic and socioeconomic factors is having on the labour market. Based on the data from the 2001 Census and from the Active Population Survey (EPA, Encuesta de Población Activa), the ageing of the working population shall be quantified and broken down into worker gender and nationality, differentiating between the different economic sectors and professions. This will give us an overall x-ray image of the phenomenon, in addition to the specific features of each sector.

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Presented in Poster Session 3