Дата публикации

Demographic security is the basis for the subsequent dynamic development of the country

Today, the issue of demography is very critical. Citizens are one of the key strategic resources, without which it is impossible to maintain the independence and sovereignty of the country, the development of regions.

The global trend towards the reduction and aging of the indigenous population of developed countries, unfortunately, is also characteristic of Belarus. In some countries — for example, in Germany, in France — the population decline is still offset by the influx of migrants from Africa and Asia. In our country, a reduction in human resources has been recorded for several years in a row. Therefore, solving the issues of achieving sustainable natural population growth (increasing the birth rate while reducing mortality) is an urgent task. Its solution is the basis for the subsequent dynamic development of the country. It is no coincidence that the fertility issue was raised by the President in his Address to the Belarusian people and the National Assembly, focusing on the need to increase the number of children in families to three or more. The implementation of this approach is one of the foundations of the social policy of Belarus at the present stage.

Statistical data on demography as of January 1, 2023 indicate that the most noticeable decrease in the population in the country was noted in the Vitebsk region — by 11.9 thousand people, or 1.1 percent over the year. In the region, the largest reduction is observed in the Sharkovshchina district — by 3.5 percent, Senno — by 3.3 percent, Ushachy — by 2.7 percent. The decline in the population in the region is largely caused by internal migration, primarily to the metropolitan region due to more attractive working conditions.

One of the important elements of social policy aimed at creating conditions and motivating the birth of children is the state-supported construction of housing. In the Vitebsk region in 2022, 2.6 thousand families (including single citizens) received housing and improved their conditions, including 0.8 thousand young families and 1.1 thousand large families. In general, about 2 thousand large and young families in the region annually improve their living conditions.

An important area of work to improve the demographic situation, motivation for the birth of children is the provision of financial support. Today, the country has uniform standards of payments, both lump-sum and monthly, which are bound to the budget of the subsistence minimum or to the average monthly salary of employees in the country with periodic revision of the amount of payments upward. In addition, there are a number of financial support tools (in cash and in kind) within the framework of state targeted social assistance, which are aimed at supporting families with minor children.

The recipients of such assistance last year were 32.5 thousand residents of the Vitebsk region. Due to the improvement of the material condition, since 2018, there has been a positive trend towards a decrease in the number of citizens receiving targeted social assistance (the main criterion for its appointment is the average per capita income of family members). Over the past five years, the reduction in payments amounted to 28.6 percent, for 2022 — 8.5 percent. This also indicates a trend towards the formation of full families with minor children (the number of recipients of targeted assistance from single-parent families has decreased by 20 percent in just a year), which, in fact, is an element of traditional family values - raising children with the active participation of mother and father.

At the same time, it seems that ensuring positive shifts in demographic processes in the medium and even more so in the long term is impossible and impractical with a simple infusion of funds for everyone. This approach leads to the formation of social dependency. And, as a result, it does not solve the main problem — filling the economy of the region and the country with labor resources.

Of particular importance today is the search and implementation of tools for the systematic promotion of the concept of a traditional large family, in which care and love reign, an understanding of the importance of work. Mechanisms of economic and social support for families should complement it, speeding up processes in society and increasing the effectiveness of management decisions.