Life Expectancy In Zimbabwe: An Analysis Of Five Decades

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Genius Murwirapachena
Courage Mlambo

Keywords

Life Expectancy, Economic Growth, Zimbabwe

Abstract

Great inconsistencies have been observed in life expectancy dynamics in Zimbabwe over the past decades. Contradictions exist among Zimbabweans where some believe that people used to live longer during the colonial era than they live now. Such beliefs have been exacerbated by the recent economic woes that ensued in the country. Dynamics in the Zimbabwean life expectancy patterns have seen male Zimbabweans outliving their female counterparts since the year 2000.  Such an alteration contradicts general world life expectancy trends where females commonly live longer than males. This paper analyses trends in the Zimbabwean life expectancy over the period 1970 to 2012. The ordinary least squares method is used to examine the impact of economic growth, inflation, increase in agriculture land, population growth and the dependency ratio on life expectancy in Zimbabwe. Empirical results from this study revealed that economic growth, inflation and population growth have a positive relationship with life expectancy while increases in both agricultural land and the dependency ratio have negative effects on life expectancy in Zimbabwe.

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