Skip to main content

Moldova is among the most advanced countries in Eastern Europe when it comes to making the shift toward people-centered population policies

CHISINAU, March 2024 – Having quality data and using it as evidence base for policy-making is critical for addressing the demographic challenges the Republic of Moldova is facing and ensuring good governance, participants agreed at an international conference on data-driven governance organized by the United Nations Population Fund, in partnership with the State Chancellery and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Chisinau today. 

Even though the Republic of Moldova has one of the highest fertility rates in Europe, with 1.7 children per woman, its birth rate remains below the level needed to keep the population number stable, and – coupled with significant outmigration – has contributed to a steady decrease in the country’s population, from 2684,8 thousands persons on 1 January 2019 to 2512,8 thousands persons on 1 January 2023. At the same time, the proportion of older people in the population has increased rapidly, from almost 21 per cent in 2019 to 24 per cent in 2023.  

“There is no quick-fix solution to respond to the demographic challenges we’re facing in the region,” said UNFPA Regional Director Florence Bauer at the opening of the conference. “What is needed is a comprehensive approach that addresses the many barriers young people face in planning their future in their own country and having the number of children they want. And this is why quality data is so important – without it, we won’t understand these barriers and what policies are needed to remove them.”

The 2-day conference, titled Building Data Governance for Efficient Decision-Making Policies, brought together over 100 experts in statistical data and demography to discuss ways to generate quality statistical data and, population projections, which are essential for developing policies that mitigate the negative consequences of population shifts and make full use of the opportunities that also come with demographic change.

“The Republic of Moldova is among the most advanced countries in Eastern Europe when it comes to making the shift towards comprehensive, people-centered population policies,” added Ms. Bauer. 

In 2021, the Government of the Republic of Moldova embraced a modern vision on demographic resilience, centred on the needs and well-being of people and moving away from an approach focused predominantly on numbers. Since then, a number of measures have been introduced to strengthen demographic resilience, including new legislation to expand gender-sensitive family policies in the public and private sectors, and programmes to strengthen the quality of data for evidence-based policies, to empower young people, boost local development through Diaspora engagement, and promote active aging through digitalization and life-long learning.

The Conference on Data Governance also addressed the use of statistical data in the context of the Republic of Moldova’s process of accession to the European Union.

Experts noted that with the support of UNFPA, the European Union, the Government of Switzerland, and India, the Republic of Moldova has modernized the national statistical system, which now has enhanced capacities to calculate population statistics and develop forecasts to inform medium and long-term public policies. 

It was noted that further efforts are needed from the central authorities to transfer knowledge and experience to the local level so that local authorities can use existing data and resources in their budget planning and local development programs.

A Population and Housing Census will take place in the Republic of Moldova from 8 April to 7 July 2024, which will significantly enhance the data available for projections, planning of service delivery and policymaking.

It was also mentioned that in Moldova will soon start producing annual population forecasts which will allow the Government to better understand population dynamics and intervene with policies that respond to changing demographic and social realities.