Life expectancy in Russia drops for the first time since 2003 due to excess deaths during the pandemic
Life expectancy at birth in Russia dropped to 71.1 years in 2020 from 73.3 years in 2019, RBC reports, citing the most recent draft of the government’s plan for achieving national development goals.
According to RBC, two anonymous sources close to the government confirmed the indicators contained in the document, which was first published by the Telegram channel May Decree on Wednesday, March 10.
This drop in Russia’s average life expectancy marks the first decrease in annual terms since 2003, RBC underscores, citing data from the Federal Statistics Service (Rosstat). RBC attributes the decrease to the spike in excess deaths in Russia from April to December 2020, which amounted to 358,000 people.
The current draft of the national development plan anticipates that life expectancy in Russia won’t return to the 2019 level until 2024. According to the forecasts contained in the document, life expectancy will increase to 71.7 years in 2021, 72.3 years in 2022, 72.9 years in 2023, and 73.6 years in 2024.
“The spread of the novel coronavirus infection has objectively diverted the Russian Federation from a development trajectory aimed at achieving the national goals established in 2018,” says the draft of the government’s unified plan.
According to an executive order on Russia’s national development goals signed by Vladimir Putin last July, the country is aiming to increase life expectancy to 78 years by 2030.