Editor’s note: The following is the full text of statement released Thursday by Premier McKeeva Bush on Cayman’s preliminary 2010 Census count.
“Preliminary results of the two month-long census exercise conducted
by the Economics and Statistics Office last year, reveal that the Cayman
Islands’ population now stands at 54,878.
received back in 2008 projected a total of just over 57,000 and the expectation,
then, was that the population would continue to grow.
“But what we have been witnessing on
the ground has been the opposite. And the preliminary 2010 census results now
confirm that the Cayman Islands’ population is declining.
“This population downtrend has the potential
to negatively impact local economic activity and is thus a matter of serious
concern, one which needs immediate action.
“The new census results accordingly compel
government to continue pushing for policies that will promote sustainable
population growth in the Cayman Islands. While we do not want a runaway
population spiral, what we do need is sustainable growth that can spur healthy local
“The census results further reveal that
population growth among the districts is uneven. We have a large gap in numbers
for George Town, compared to West Bay and Bodden Town, the two other population-dense
“But we have to maintain sustainable
growth in all our districts.
Government considers this a vital requirement for progress and we want to
address this actively.
“The relatively slow population
growth in the Sister Islands must also be addressed. Facilitating greater
economic activity in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman therefore becomes vital to
achieve growth in keeping with the environmental concerns that characterise
“We don’t want some districts to be
left behind in Cayman’s socioeconomic development process; otherwise our
progress will not be meaningful.
“I expect to receive the final census
report in the last quarter of this year. It will provide in-depth information
on each district’s socioeconomic and demographic dynamics. We need those
figures in order to take focused action.
“I expect this data to guide my government’s
response, not only to the issues that exist at the district level, but equally
importantly, to promote balanced growth across the country.”