Poland is shrinking

Published on 7 January 2011 at 11:20

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“Large cities are losing inhabitants fast” headlines an alarmed Rzeczpospolita. Over the last decade, a city like Łódź, which once had a population of nearly 800,000, can only now boast 740,000 inhabitants, a figure that could drop to 600,000 in next twenty years. While other Polish cities struggle with the same problem, only the population of Warsaw has steadily increased to its current 1.72 million. “People go where the good jobs are”, says a 39-year old IT specialist who has just left Łódź for Cracow where he currently earns three times as much. According to the Central Statistical Office (GUS), the emptying of Polish cities is a sign of the wider demographic trend. It is estimated that due to a dwindling birth rate, emigration, and “short-sighted” policies, Poland’s population will shrink from the current 38 million to a little over 35 million by 2035.

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