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Greater population decline anticipated for Puerto Rico by 2025

By on September 18, 2017

SAN JUAN — Puerto Rico’s population has been projected at 2,980,532 people by 2025, the Statistics Institute (PRSI) said as part of an update to demographic projections by the U.S. Census Bureau on the island.

In its previous projection, that would have been the population in 2050, but has now been lowered to 2,089,492 for that year.

The update is the most recent since 2013 and took into account demographic components such as births and deaths up to 2015, which are consistent with the preliminary data of the Demographic Register and indicate that the number of deaths exceeded births during 2016.

“It is our duty to ensure that Puerto Rico is up-to-date with the new numbers that the U.S. Census Bureau publishes about our reality. During the next decade [2017-2026], the federal government now projects that Puerto Rico’s population will decline 1.4 percent annually, on average, a decline we believe is seven times higher than the assumed projection [0.2 percent] in the Financial Oversight & Management Board and government’s fiscal plan,” said PRSI’s executive director, Dr. Mario Marazzi-Santiago.

In the new scenario, it is assumed that the current migration wave will continue until 2025, when it is estimated that only about 25,000 people will migrate from Puerto Rico in net terms.

Likewise, the U.S. Census Bureau’s Puerto Rico Community Survey (PRCS) revealed that Puerto Rico lost a net 67,000 residents who moved stateside during 2016.

Some 88,000 Puerto Ricans moved to US mainland in 2016

According to the data–which include social, economic and housing characteristics for Puerto Rico and municipalities with a population of 65,000 people or more–in 2016 roughly 21,000 people moved from the U.S. mainland to the island, while 88,000 migrated in opposite direction. These are the “highest” migratory figures since the Puerto Rico Community Survey began to be conducted 12 years ago.

“The migratory balance between Puerto Rico and the United States exhibits continuity in the tendency of thousands of people emigrating from Puerto Rico. The migration wave shows no signs of diminishing. In 12 years [2005-2016], this has averaged a net balance of minus-44,000 people annually,” PRSI Statistics Projects Manager Alberto Velázquez said.

For more information, visit the PRSI’s website, or any of its social media accounts on Facebook (, Twitter (@EstadisticasPR) and LinkedIn (Instituto de Estadísticas de Puerto Rico).

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