A deadly combination of a plummeting birthrate and massive immigration portend that native Italians will make up an increasingly small percentage of Italy’s overall population, a new study reports.
Italy’s fertility rate is less than half of what it was in 1964, the Centro Machiavelli reported in its study titled “How immigration is changing Italian demographics.” It has dropped from 2.7 children per woman to just 1.5 children per woman currently, a figure well below the replacement level for zero population growth of roughly 2.1 children per woman.
As of the first of this year, Italy had over five million foreigners living as residents, a growth of a remarkable 25 percent relative to 2012 and a whopping 270 percent over 2002. At that time, foreigners made up just 2.38 percent of the population while fifteen years later the figure has nearly trebled to 8.33 percent of the population.
Moreover, even the children being born in Italy are over-represented by immigrants, whose birthrate is considerably higher than native Italians, the study revealed. It is “unsurprising,” therefore, that Italian regions with the highest fertility rates are no longer in the south, as was ever the case, but in the Italian north and in the Lazio region, where there is a higher concentration of immigrants.