The active population is an economic magnitude that defines the number of people of working age in a territory who have a paid job or who aspire to access one, both conditions being recorded in official employment records.
Therefore, the individuals belonging to the active population of a place are included within what is known as the labor market. This happens either because they are an employed population or because they are over 16 years old (in most countries) and they are demonstrably looking for a job.
Alternatively, starting at age 67, the retirement age is set as the upper limit. Retired persons would not enter the calculation of the total active population either.
Difference between active population and population of working age
The active population should not be confused with the population of working age. Although it is true that all the members of the active population have an age to legally carry out a professional activity. The definition of active population excludes those who carry out a professional activity without obtaining an economic consideration or a salary.
In this sense, students or housewives are not found within the active population, because they are not conceptually looking for a paid job and, therefore, in the process of entering the labor market. For example, a 19-year-old student who is studying and does not intend to work is not considered part of the active population, but is part of the population of working age.
The activity rate is a meter that is useful when it comes to knowing the force in terms of work in a territory, economic growth or its level of productivity.
Activity rate = Active Population / Total Population
It is customary, and obviously recommended, for a country that its volume of active population is the largest within the totality of its population, since when developing their professional activities they move the aggregate production of a country and therefore its economy.