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Population and development in the overseas territories of Europe


  • Jean-Louis Rallu


The outermost regions of the European Union have con-trasting demographic situations. Although fertility is low in the Atlantic outermost regions (1.2 children per woman on average in the Canaries) and in Martinique (1.9), and the rate of natural increase similar to that of the mainland countries to which they belong (around 3 per 1,000), French Guiana and Mayotte still have high fertility levels and a young population (35% and 44% of their inhabitants, respectively, are under 15), as do New Caledonia (28%) and French Polynesia (26%). In the Canaries, large-scale immigration more than offsets low fertility, resulting in sustained population growth (+23 per 1,000). In French Guiana and Mayotte, immigration and fertility are both high, and their populations are growing rapidly (+37 per 1,000 and +31 per 1,000, respectively). Employment rates are much higher in the Atlantic outermost regions (60%) than in the French overseas départements (40%). Regional integration, extending beyond tourism, is now a major challenge for the development of these overseas regions.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Louis Rallu, 2009. "Population and development in the overseas territories of Europe," Population and Societies 456, Institut National d'Études Démographiques (INED).
  • Handle: RePEc:idg:posoce:456

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    1. Yannick L'Horty, 2014. "La persistance du chômage ultra-marin," Working Papers halshs-01100366, HAL.

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