“We are going to believe that we are less, but we are better”, declared the vice-president of the Regional Government of Madeira, Pedro Calado, at the press conference to present data relating to the archipelago, in Funchal.

The population is made up of 133,34 women and 117,712 men.

Madeira had an increase in households of 2.21 percent, from 94,990 to 92,936 and a reduction of 0.1 percent in buildings, with 91,961 properties being accounted for.

Funchal, the main municipality of Madeira, also suffered a reduction of 5.34 percent, having lost almost 6,000 residents in the last decade, which now number 105,919, continuing to be the only one with more than 100,000 people.

“The reduction of residents is happening in all 11 municipalities of Madeira”, highlighted the regional director of Statistics, Paulo Vieira.

The municipality of Câmara de Lobos, after three successive increases in previous censuses, registered a decrease in population, with a drop of 9.79 percent, and a total of 32,175 residents.

At the level of the 54 parishes of the archipelago, only seven had population increases, with the greatest growth occurring in Água de Pena (Machico), with 12.94 percent (2,749).

The others are Calheta and Paul do Mar (Calheta), Caniço (Santa Cruz), Tábua (Porto Moniz), São Martinho and Sé (Funchal).

São Martinho is the parish of Funchal with the most residents, 26,480 people, having grown by 1.91 percent.

Porto Santo also lost 5.93 percent of its inhabitants, 225 people, but maintains a resident population above 5,000 (5,158).

The municipality of Calheta, in the west of Madeira, has the largest increase in accommodation (4.48 percent) in the region, with 7,624 properties.

The vice president of the Madeira highlighted that the “migratory balance, people from emigration centers”, such as people who returned from Venezuela, “was not enough to compensate for the reduction in population in the region”, making it impossible to count the number that entered the region in recent years.

Another aspect focused on was the aging index in the region, which stands at 136.4, which represents that for every 100 young people there are 136 elderly people.

The natural balance (difference between births and deaths) has been negative in the last three years in the order of 700, having reached 853 in 2020.

Census work in Madeira began in April, with more than 87 percent of people responding to the online survey, 7.7 percent through interviews, 4.2 perceent in parish councils and 2 percent using traditional methods (paper and telephone).

The regional director of Statistics informed that “this process does not end now”, because “between September and November a quality survey, by sections” will take place.

The vice president of the Regional Government stressed that these data related to the reduction and aging of the population in the archipelago were already expected and motivated some of the measures adopted to encourage birth rates and improve quality of life, reduce the tax burden and support policies for elderly population.