Rabat – The number of Muslims living in Europe is expected to grow to more than 11.2 percent by 2050, according to new projections released by the Washington-based Pew Research Center on the continent’s growing Muslim population.
The US-based public opinion and demographic research center modelled three scenarios for the Muslim population that vary depending on future levels of migration.
According to the research, “Muslims made up 4.9 percent of Europe’s population in 2016, with an estimated 25.8 million people across 30 countries, up from 19.5 million people in 2010.”
Pew Research Center predicted three scenarios in which the Muslim population is likely to increase.
In the first scenario, under zero migration, in which Europe would immediately and permanently close its borders in the face of Muslim migrants, the Muslim population of Europe still would be expected to rise from the current level of 4.9 percent to 7.4 percent by the year 2050.
In the second scenario with medium migration, in which the flow of refugees stops but people continue to migrate for other reasons, for example, work or study, the Muslim population of Europe could reach 11.2 percent of Europe’s population in 2050.
The third scenario in which the record flow of migrants continues to be high, Muslims could make up 14 percent of Europe’s population by 2050 – nearly triple the current share.
“While Europe’s Muslim population is expected to grow in all three scenarios – and more than double in the medium and high migration scenarios – Europe’s non-Muslims, on the other hand, are projected to decline in total number in each scenario,” says the Pew report.
The research found that even if the European countries closed their borders to migrants, the percentage of the Muslim population in Europe would continue to increase thanks to “a younger age profile and higher fertility rates.”