Cyprus & World News

EUROPE: Cyprus among top five in EU for population growth

09 July, 2018

Cyprus was one of five EU countries that saw a double-digit growth to its population during 2017, official data shows.


Last year the population increased in 19 EU Member States and decreased in nine, Eurostat said.

The largest relative increase was observed in Malta (+32.9 per 1 000 residents), ahead of Luxembourg (+19.0%), Sweden (+12.4), Ireland (+11.2) and Cyprus (+11).

Cyprus’ population reached 864,200 on January 1, 2018 from 854,800 a year earlier.

In contrast, the largest decrease was recorded in Lithuania (-13.8‰), followed by Croatia (-11.8), Latvia (-8.1), Bulgaria (-7.3) and Romania (-6.2).

In total, the population of the EU increased by 1.1 million people (+2.1 per 1000 residents) during the year 2017.

Increase driven by migration

On 1 January 2018, the population of the EU was estimated at 512.6 million, compared with 511.5 million the year before.

During 2017, more deaths than births were recorded in the EU (5.3 million deaths and 5.1 million births), meaning that the natural change of the EU population was negative. The population change (positive, with 1.1 million more inhabitants) was therefore due to net migration.

With 82.9 million residents (or 16.2% of the total EU population), Germany is the most populated Member State, ahead of France (67.2 million, or 13.1%), the UK (66.2 million, or 12.9%), Italy (60.5 million, or 11.8%), Spain (46.7 million, or 9.1%) and Poland (38.0 million, or 7.4%).

Highest birth rate in Ireland, lowest in Italy

In 2017, 5.1 million babies were born in the EU, almost 90,000 less than the previous year. Across Europe, the highest crude birth rates were recorded in Ireland (12.9 per 1 000 residents), Sweden (11.5), the UK and France (both 11.4).

The lowest were registered in Southern Member States: Italy (7.6), Greece (8.2), Portugal and Spain (both 8.4), Croatia (8.9‰) and Bulgaria (9.0).

At EU level, the crude birth rate was 9.9 per 1 000 residents. In the meantime, 5.3 million deaths were registered in the EU in 2017, 134,200 fewer than the previous year. Ireland (6.3 per 1 000 residents) and Cyprus (7.0), as well as Luxembourg (7.1) had the lowest crude death rate.

At the opposite end of the scale, Bulgaria (15.5), Latvia (14.8), Lithuania (14.2), Hungary (13.5), Romania (13.3) and Croatia (12.9) recorded the highest. The crude death rate was 10.3 per 1 000 residents in the EU.

Consequently, Ireland (with a natural change of its population of +6.6‰) remains the Member State where births most outnumbered deaths, ahead of Cyprus (+3.8), Luxembourg (+3.2), France (+2.5), Sweden (+2.3) and the UK (+2.2).

Among the 14 EU states which registered a negative natural change, deaths outnumbered births the most in Bulgaria (-6.5), followed by Croatia and Latvia (both -4.1), Lithuania (-4.0), Hungary (-3.8), Romania (-3.6), Greece (-3.3) and Italy (-3.2).