Population in Severodvinsk shrinks and elders

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Nearly one quarter of the population has moved from Severodvinsk, Arkhangelsk Oblast in course of the last 16 years. Every sixth inhabitant is now over 60 years.


The latest demographic statistics for Severodvinsk are worth some reflection, local newspaper Northwestern Worker writes. The town’s population is constantly shrinking, and the average age of the remaining people is increasing.

The population has shrunk from 258.600 people in 1991 to 188.000 in 2009.

Severodvinsk has always been regarded as a young town. In the Soviet period this was an industrial center where the best specialists from all over the country came to work. Severodvinsk is the second largest city in Arkhangelsk Oblast. Its main industry remains defense related - Russia’s largest shipbuilding company Sevmash is located here, as well as the major ship repair yard Zvezdochka. Nearly 70 percent of the working population is employed in the ship building or ship repair industry.

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The main factor in the population decline is migration. The number of people moving from Severodvinsk exceeds the number of people moving to the town by 2-3 times. Only in 2008, 2583 people moved from Severodvinsk, while 431 decided to settle there.

Many of the people leaving Severodvinsk are young people who decide not to come back after having finished university or college. The situation got somewhat better in 2009, Northwestern Worker writes. The economic crisis did not have such a big impact on Severodvinsk as on many other Russian towns, and many young people found it more profitable to stay home.

At the same time, the remaining population is getting older. For every 1000 persons in active working age, there are 450 children, juveniles and pensioners. The number of pensioners is growing every year, and now every sixth person in Severodvinsk is 60 years or older.

Most of the elderly people in Severodvinsk are women, as the average life expectancy for men is only 59 years, while it is 73 years for women.