The proportion of people with “Roma ties” in Hungary may rise from roughly 5.5 percent in 2011 to 9 percent by 2050. A continuously growing, but moderately aging gypsy population in Hungary is projected by the scenarios that were carried out at the Research Institute of Population Studies of the KSH.
The authors of the study “Forecasting the Hungarian Roma population until 2050” point out: the country’s population has been decreasing since 1980, and deaths exceed the number of births. In the case of the Roma, however, we can still speak of natural reproduction. This results in the constant proportion growth when it comes to Roma people, writes portfolio.hu. According to the most likely scenario, the number of gypsy-related population is 697 thousand. Two other calculations are 654 thousand and 805 thousand by 2050.
The number of women of childbearing age is decreasing nationwide. Therefore, fewer children will be born in the next 40 years. This trend is not characteristic of Roma society, in their case the number of women of childbearing age was 155,000 in 2011, which is expected to increase in the future. At the same time, school graduation of gypsy women is projected to increase in the future. However, this also means that they will have fewer children and their fertility ratio will decrease. There is a close connection between education and fertility: as the education level increases, the average number of children decreases. Nevertheless, changes in the fertility “behavior” of Roma women will affect the number of women of childbearing age only 15 years later.
As Hungary’s population is aging, the proportion of “Roma people” in the total population will increase in all age groups. While the proportion of the elderly exceeded 15 percent in Hungary in 2011, only 5.1 percent of the Roma population belonged to this age group. According to the basic version of the national forecast, this value will rise to 28 percent by 2050, while the proportion of elderly people with “Roma ties” will be only 15.7 percent.
The main reason for this is that the estimated life expectancy at birth increases in their case as well. According to the basic hypothesis, the mortality characteristics of the Roma improve slightly, but their life expectancy at birth rises more slowly than that of the majority of society. The initial five-year lag between Roma and non-Roma increases to 7 years by the end of the period. It increases from 75.0 to 78.4 years for women and from 66.8 to 72.9 years for men.