President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih estimated on Thursday night that, per currently available statistics, the population of Maldives is set to hit a total of 500,000 people, before the end of 2019.
Speaking at the ceremony held in celebration of World Population Day, the President said that 533,000 people will be recorded as residents in the country by year-end, adding that foreigners will consist of approximately 30 percent of the amount.
The most recent census, conducted in 2014, reported that the population of Maldives, including immigrants, stood at 402,071. At the time, there were a total of 338,434 locals and 63,637 expatriates.
Referring to these numbers, the President stressed the importance of finding solutions to the issue, which indicates a large portion of the nation's income will be directed out of the country.
"Unless locals step up for the roles currently filled by expatriates, there is no way of preventing occupational income from leaving the country. It is important Maldivians consider the issue and fill up the various opportunities in our job sector currently held by expatriates ", President Solih reasoned.
"The government has plans to establish a migration policy to fully utilise locals that are relocating to other islands as well as the expatriates migrating to Maldives".
Noting that the most valuable commodity of any country is its people, President Solih stated that particular sectors in which the population can be better brought to service must be identified, for the country to truly reap the benefits of development.
Comparing birth and mortality rates, the President stated that the population of senior citizens was projected to have a large increase by the year 2054. As such, he noted that major efforts to increase the output of the current working class and strongly integrate a culture of saving for the future or to amass ones' retirement savings, needs to commence immediately.
In Maldives, youth comprise of 36 percent of the total population, while the working population comprises of 67 percent.