Dwindling birth rate will hurt economy, expert says

Bill Graveland, Times Colonist (Victoria)

Canada’s aging population, combined with a lacklustre birthrate, is going to dramatically impact our country’s economic performance in the future, according to an expert in the field.

Canada is going to prove troublesome within the next 12 years, David Foot, a professor of economics at the University of Toronto and co-author of the book Boom, Bust & Echo: How to Profit from the Coming Demographic Shift told the Global Business Forum this week.

For a country to successfully replace its aging workforce, it needs a birthrate of 2.2 children per family, Foot said. He added that Canada is only managing a rate of 1.7 per family and that means Canada’s labour woes are going to get even worse.

“Canada is significantly older than the U.S. and Mexico, with a much bigger percentage in the older-age brackets and ever fewer numbers of young people being born in Canada,” said Foot.

“That’s well below replacement and if you don’t have an extensive child-care program to support women raising their children, you’ll watch your fertility rate continue to decline.”…