The poor economic situation of the elderly is further demonstrated by their need to borrow money for regular expenses. The elderly in all three countries report borrowing money for food, although, Georgians and Azerbaijanis do so less frequently than Armenians. Nearly a third of the elderly in Armenia say they borrow money for food at least monthly, while only 15% in Azerbaijan and Georgia say the same. The elderly in all three countries are less likely to borrow money to pay for utilities than to buy food.
Besides borrowing money for food and utilities, the elderly report limiting their consumption of certain products. Although such limitations are characteristic of all age groups, the elderly are more likely to do so compared to the rest of the population. Most elderly people state that they limit their consumption of meat and fish. Nearly half of Armenia’s elderly say they also limit consumption of butter and milk, while only 21% of Azerbaijanis and 31% of Georgians report the same. Armenians are also much more likely to limit consumption of fish, fruits and vegetables.
Thus, the economic condition of the elderly in the South Caucasus countries is unsatisfactory. Most of the elderly, especially in Armenia, state that their income is not enough for food and utilities. Consequently, they have to borrow money and limit consumption of certain products. This can be considered a cause for concern, especially as the share of the elderly population will increase in the upcoming decades, and the state will face further economic challenges without having worked out those of today.