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Prime Minister Concern Over Declining Population Growth

Phnom Penh, April 9, 2024 - Prime Minister Hun Manet of Cambodia has expressed apprehension regarding the decelerating pace of population growth, warning of potential labor shortages in the nation's future.

Addressing the Closing Ceremony of the 2023 annual meeting convened by the Ministry of Planning on Tuesday morning, PM Hun Manet underscored the significance of grappling with Cambodia's demographic challenges. He cited projections indicating a noteworthy demographic shift by 2050, characterized by a dwindling youth population in comparison to the elderly.

"While current estimates derived from census data may not signal immediate alarm for 2050, we are witnessing a widening disparity between the elderly and the youth," remarked Prime Minister Hun Manet. "Further decline in the birth rate could compound this challenge."

The Prime Minister urged couples with stable financial means to contemplate expanding their families, emphasizing their role in fostering Cambodia's demographic equilibrium.

According to the 2019 Census Report, Cambodia's population stood at approximately 15.3 million, reflecting an increase of about 1.8 million individuals since the 2008 census. However, the annual growth rate has dwindled to a mere 1.2 percent, a marked decline attributed to factors such as diminishing fertility rates and emigration, particularly to neighboring countries.

The ramifications of a shrinking population are far-reaching, potentially impacting various sectors including the labor force, economic productivity, and social welfare provisions.

Prime Minister Hun Manet's remarks underscore the government's acknowledgment of the urgency to address demographic challenges and implement policies aimed at encouraging population growth and ensuring sustainable development.

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