The development strategy of the New Uzbekistan envisages the construction of a society where human interests are placed above all else, and the creation of decent living conditions and accelerated development of all spheres are the main goals of the transformations. Collectively, this should ensure the prosperity of the state and increase the confidence of every citizen in the future.
According to the Statistics Agency under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, as of June 27, 2023, the country has a population of 36.4 million people. For comparison: in 1920, the population of our country was 4.4 million. Thus, over the past century, the population of Uzbekistan has increased more than eightfold. From 1920 to 2022, the natural growth rate reached 20.9 per thousand and increased by 9.9 per thousand.
In recent years, the demographic situation in Uzbekistan is characterized by a rapid growth in population. Its density at the beginning of 2023 exceeded 80 people per square kilometer. Attention should also be paid to the significant variation of this indicator across the country: from the highest – more than 6.6 thousand people in the capital, to the lowest – 9.5 people in the Navoi region.
According to the Interstate Statistical Committee of the CIS, the preliminary estimate of the population of the Commonwealth countries at the beginning of 2022 was 287 million people. Russia’s population in 2022 was about 146 million people. Population growth in this country has a negative trend with a natural decline rate of more than four percent. The most positive demographic situation is observed in the countries of Central Asia, Azerbaijan, and Armenia. Among the Commonwealth countries, Uzbekistan is the leader, in 2022 this indicator reached about 21 percent.
To assess long-term trends in changes in the demographic situation, a set of multivariate forecasts of demographic development of the country and its regions until the end of 2050 was developed by a group of national and international experts based on the application of the cohort-component model recognized in scientific circles. It includes 14 regional forecasts for 12 administrative regions, the Republic of Karakalpakstan, and the city of Tashkent, as well as a forecast for the republic as a whole.
The basis for forecast-oriented analysis of demographic trends at both the national and regional levels was detailed official statistics on the population for 2000-2021. Preliminary results of the registration of civil status acts for the first nine months of 2022 were also taken into account.
According to the calculations, the population of Uzbekistan in the next three decades will grow dynamically and will exceed 41 million people in 2030, 46 million people in 2040, and 50 million people in 2050. Overall, for 2022-2050, the country’s population will increase by 41 percent. Throughout the forecasted period, the decisive component of the reproduction of the country’s population will remain its natural growth, which will be characterized by a high number of births and a relatively low number of deaths.
Volumes of internal and external migration will increase. Along with this, an increase in the negative migration balance is expected until 2030, which will stabilize at a low level (40 thousand people) in 2030-2050. Migration processes are expected to be dominated by the number of emigrants over the number of immigrants. Territorial population movements will be characterized by high mobility of young working-age people.
Changes are expected not only in numbers but also in the age structure of the population. Thus, for 2022-2050, the population under the age of 15 will increase by 0.9 million people. At the same time, for 2022-2035, the share of this age group will increase to 13.6 million people, but in the subsequent period, it will decrease to 12.3 million people, its share in the total population will decrease from 31.7 to 24.2 percent.
The working-age population will grow throughout the entire forecasted period and will grow to 28.3 million people in 2050, that is, it will increase by more than 7.8 million people. At the same time, its share in the period 2025-2050 will be maintained at a high level (56 percent) and will practically not decrease. This is evidence of a fairly favorable situation with labor resources in our country, which in turn creates a solid and long-term basis for the development of productive forces, attracting investments, and ultimately forming the foundations for the growth of the well-being of the population.
The population older than working age will become the fastest-growing group during the forecasted period, its number will increase more than 2.5 times, from the initial 4.1 million people to 10.1 million people in 2050, the share in the total population – from 11.3 to 20 percent. It is assumed that the average age of the population will increase.
Regional differences will concern the rates and volumes of population growth. The largest growth is expected in Surkhandarya (53.7 percent), Kashkadarya (49.3 percent), and Jizzakh regions (48.7 percent), as well as in Tashkent (48.9 percent). The lowest rates of population growth will be in the Republic of Karakalpakstan (24 percent), Tashkent (24.7 percent), and Bukhara (28 percent) regions.
Uzbekistan will overtake many CIS countries in population and will retain a leading position in Central Asia in this indicator. From the point of view of the possibilities of using positive trends related to the number and structure of the population, Uzbekistan is currently at the stage of the first demographic window of opportunities, and subsequently, it will experience the period of the second window of demographic opportunities.
The proposed directions of transformations to create decent conditions for the realization of each person’s potential – further reform of the education system, ensuring health care, increasing the average life expectancy of the population, providing an adequate list of social services are based on a comprehensive consideration of dynamic and favorable demographic changes. Measures to ensure sustainable economic growth as the foundation of the well-being of the population and poverty reduction stem from the fact that the rates of economic growth must outpace the natural growth of the population of Uzbekistan by several times.