Population shortfall brings Poland to more family support


Central Europe


Minister Malag (left) with Prime Minister Morawiecki. Photo EPA, Wojciech Olkusnik

Poland’s government is preparing a new demographic strategy intended to tackle one of Europe’s lowest fertility rates. The programme will be based on „supporting families” and „not migration”, says the Minister for Families, Marlena Malag. Also, in Ukraine there is a demographic alarm.

Speaking to Polsat News, the minister said that the plan would „soon be adopted” by the government. While full details have not been disclosed, it will include measures to help parents combine work with family life as well as housing, care and financial incentives.

Increasing birth rate

The aim would be to help Poland „escape the low fertility trap” by increasing the birth rate to one that sustains the population, said Malag. She cited research showing that 95 per cent of young people in Poland would like to start a family, but noted that this requires stable employment, housing and care for children up to three years.

To address those needs, Mrs Malag already disclosed a number of measures the government will take next year. The most concrete being an additional new child benefit scheme, to be launched in early 2022. Under the so-called “parental care capital” programme, parents will be entitled to 12,000 zloty (2612 euro) for each child after their firstborn between the age of 12 and 36 months.

The government is also planning to establish new institutions devoted to comprehensive studies of demographic processes that would aid in boosting demographics.

Labour gap

Poland is facing a growing demographic shortfall – with its population expected to fall below 34 million (from around 38 million at present) by 2050. The demographic problems have been exacerbated by the pandemic. The country has attracted large numbers of migrants, mostly from Ukraine, to plug the resulting labour gap.

But Minister Malag stresses Poland cannot depend on the growing number of immigrants to tackle the demographic shortfall. The country will therefore not promote additional immigration. „Our demographic strategy will be based primarily on supporting families."


There is also a demographic alarm in Ukraine. MP Yuri Pavlenko says that “large families” should be promoted.

According to the internet platform UOJ, Pavlenko says that the state has a responsibility in trying to get down the abortion number and increase the number of births. “Everything grows from the family, from school, from the media. And the state can encourage every person and family to have a child," Pavlenko said.

He believes the state has the power to help young, socially disadvantaged mothers.



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