WHY ARE ARMENIANS LEAVING ARMENIA?

Concerns Over Demographic Statistics in Gyumri and Vanadzor

Artashes_Boyajyan_Compass_Gyumri

September 12, 2015

Aravot.am reports that according to Artashes Boyajyan of Compass research center of Gyumri, recent demographic research studies in Gyumri and Vanadzor cities of Armenia show that the number of population has reduced. According to Compass center, the number of people currently living in Gyumri is 70 thousand.

“Gyumri’s population plummeted since the earthquake of 1988 due to social, economic, political, ecological and psychological challenges. The earthquake was a major reason for people to leave their city. The population of Gyumri before the earthquake was 230 thousand,” says Artashes Boyajyan.

Boyajyan believes many young people of working age have left the city to seek jobs, and many of them are seasonal migrants who work in other countries to support their families back home. The majority of population currently residing in the city consists of women, children, government employees and people employed by trade sectors. Young people who could work in industry and produce products, have left the city in search of jobs.

“Many people who are talented in construction work and trades are not in the city today – this is the talent group that could boost economic growth and produce outputs. Gyumri is an aging city as more than 10-15 per cent of its population consists of old generations,” said Boyajyan and added that the second city after Gyumri with the highest migration trend is Vanadzor.

“Vanadzor is in a poor condition too and the situation there is almost the same as Gyumri as its population number has fallen by 1,5-3 times. Vanadzor used to have a population of 166-170 thousand, however, according to the official information of the census in 2014, the city’s population is 82 thousand,” reports Compass research center of Gyumri.

Artashes Boyajyan brings data and estimations by other experts as well showing that about 1,5 million people have left Armenia during the past 27 years. He believes Armenia’s population reduced by 200 thousand during 2009-2014 only. “This means that the country’s population reduced by as many people as Gyumri’s entire population before the earthquake – this is a catastrophic situation as it makes 10 per cent of the country’s population,” says the demography expert.

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Arevshatyan, Nune. May 2015. “Catasthrophic Demographic Picture in Gyumri and Vanadzor: the Cities’ Population Has Fallen by 3-4 Times”. Aravot Daily. Retrieved from: http://www.aravot.am/2015/05/19/573073/


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