The Covid-19 epidemic has not only upset our daily lives, it also has a visible, even historical impact on the demography of France: according to figures made public Tuesday, January 19 by INSEE (find here the full study in PDF format), life expectancy at birth has dropped significantly in 2020. By around 5 months for women (to 85.2 years), and 6 months for men (to 79 ,2 years).
+ 9% deaths compared to 2019
It is the first time that such a sharp drop has occurred in the immediate post-war period, even though gains in terms of life expectancy have already tended to slow over the past decade. “This drop is twice as large as in 2015, when there was a decline, linked to the high mortality from seasonal influenza”, explains Sylvie Le Minez, from INSEE.
Our interactive map to visualize the health consequences of Covid in your region since March.
This time, the culprit is different, but well known: the Covid-19 epidemic, which increased the number of deaths in 2020 to 667,400 (+ 9% compared to 2019). The evolution of these deaths from day to day confirms the impact of the virus, drawing a very marked peak at the time of the first wave, in March-April, then a less abrupt rise, but longer, in October-November-December .
A lower birth record
Of course, France was not the only one affected by the epidemic, and the comparison with its neighbors is instructive. Where we see that our country is neither the dunce mocked by some, nor the champion touted by the government, in terms of excess mortality due to the virus. During the first wave (March-April), this excess mortality (compared to the 2016-2019 average) amounts to 26%, more moderate than in Italy (46%), the United Kingdom (47%) or Spain ( 66%), but much stronger than in Germany (4%). During the second wave (October-mid December), the differences are less marked, even if the good student remains Germany (10%), ahead of the United Kingdom (18%), France (22%) and the Spain (23%). The English variant had not yet increased the statistics across the Channel …
Another striking data from the annual report of INSEE, but this time unrelated to Covid-19: the number of births in 2020 reached an all-time low since 1945, with only 740,000 babies. “This figure has been falling steadily for six years, Sylvie le Minez notes. The fertility rate reached 1.84 children per woman, whereas it was around 2 between 2006 and 2014. ” Despite this decline, France remains at the top of the European basket in terms of, according to the latest comparisons, which date from 2018. The continental average was then 1.56 children per woman.
Marriage victims of Covid
Deaths rising sharply, births falling … Logically, the natural balance also reached an all-time low since 1945, with only + 82,000 (compared to + 300,000 in 2006). If we add the migratory balance, estimated at + 87,000, the French population therefore increased in 2020 by 169,000 individuals (+ 0.3%), to settle at 67,422,241 inhabitants. A victim of Covid and successive confinements, the number of marriages collapsed last year (- 34%). Before catching up in 2021?