17% of population are children, figure has gone down over last 17 years
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The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund celebrates World Children’s Day every year on the 20th of November, with the aim of highlighting children’s rights.
To mark this occasion the National Statistics Office has issued the latest data for Malta and Gozo.
It said that as at the end of 2017, the total resident population stood at 475,701. Nearly 17% of the resident population were children aged between 0 and 17 years. This population segment has seen a decrease of 16.4 per cent over the past 17 years, the NSO added.
The statistics compiled by the NSO show that the total number of children stood at 79,163, of these, 70,709 were Maltese
The majority of the 0-17 population is living in the Northern Harbour District (29.9%), followed by the Northern District (17.5%) and the Southern Harbour District (16.8%).
The NSO noted that in 2017 more than 95% of fathers with children between the age of 0 and 17 years were employed.
61.1% of mothers were estimated to be employed and a further 35.6% were inactive. The NSO added that additional results from the Labour Force Survey also indicate that 47.0% of children between 0 and 17 years lived in private households where both parents work.
The data that was collected through European Statistics on Income and Living Conditions Survey in 2017 estimates that 21.2% of children aged up to 17 were at-risk-of-poverty.
Of this mentioned age group, the highest poverty rates were among those aged 10 to 14 and 15 to 17 at 28.5 and 23.6%, respectively.
22.8% of those aged 0-17 were at-risk-of-poverty or social exclusion. The most vulnerable children were aged 10-14, in which case the rate was of 30.6%
The NSO also noted that data shows that most households with children aged 0-17 lived either in an apartment or a flat. There were only 1,790 households with children within the mentioned age group living in detached houses.
The analysis of expenditure patterns of households without children and households with at least one child aged 0-17, as extracted from the 2015 Household Budgetary Survey, reveals that the latter group spends more on almost every item, the NSO said.
Households with children spent approximately 18.3% of their total expenditure on Food and non-alcoholic beverages, followed by transport (15.7%) and clothing and footwear (8.9%).
A total of 55,471 children aged between 0 and 16 were enrolled in Pre-Primary, Primary and Secondary Education during the academic year 2016/2017,
The NSO added that more than half of these (31,851) were enrolled in State schools, followed by 16,264 in Church schools and 7,356 in Independent schools.
It said that the majority of students (50,069) were of Maltese nationality. Out of a total of 5,371 students of a foreign nationality, 764 were British, 739 were Italian and 627 were Libyan.
The number of absent days in compulsory education during academic year 2016/2017 totalled 531,729, an increase of 4.6% when compared to the previous academic year. The highest number of absent days were recorded in secondary education.
The total trips undertaken by outbound tourists for 2017 amounted to 572,500. The NSO said that of these, 4.9% or 28,245 trips were carried out by children aged 0-14.
A decrease of 10.5%was noted in this age category when compared to 2016. In 2017, Italy and the United Kingdom remained the two most popular destinations, with a joint share of 57.3% of total outbound tourist trips carried out by those aged between 0 and 14, the NSO said.