Estimated population decreased last year

news release no 9

According to Statistics Estonia, by preliminary data, the estimated population number in Estonia was 1,286,540 on 1 January 2013. The decline in the population in 2012 was mainly influenced by the increase of emigration and the growth in the number of deaths.

In 2012, 10,871 persons emigrated from Estonia, which are 4,657 persons more than a year earlier. At the same time 4,416 persons immigrated to Estonia. Thus we have achieved the largest negative net migration over the past decade which means that 6,455 more people emigrated than immigrated. Net migration has been negative over the entire last decade and it was the lowest due to emigration during the period 2007–2009.

14,054 live births and 15,514 deaths were registered in 2012. Compared to the previous year, the number of births decreased by 624 and the number of deaths increased by 270. The decline in the number of births and the growth in the number of deaths have also influenced the natural increase, which was negative again – there were 1,460 more deaths than births. The natural increase has been negative since 1991, but started to decline since 2004. In 2010 the natural increase was positive by 34 births, but by now there has been a turn once again. In 2012, the negative natural increase achieved the highest level during the last five years.

Births, deaths, natural increase and net migration, 1990–2012

Diagram: Births, deaths, natural increase and net migration, 1990–2012

Statistics Estonia will publish the revised preliminary population number as of 1 January 2013 on 03.05.2013.

The estimated population number is based on the final population number of the 2011 Population and Housing Census (published on 12.12.2012, according to which there were 1,294,455 permanent residents in Estonia), which have been supplemented with the data on registered births, deaths and migration during 2012. Earlier population registration was based on the population number of the previous, 2000 Population Census.

Similarly to many other EU Member States, Statistics Estonia has started to adjust the population number between the two censuses, in the course of which the undercoverage of the 2011 as well as of the 2000 Population Censuses will be eliminated (i.e. the people who for some reason have been not enumerated will be taken into account as well). The revised population figures for the years 2000–2013 will be published by Statistics Estonia during the 1st quarter of 2014. The works mentioned above are needed in order to get the base for conducting the register-based Population Census in 2020.

For further information:

Urve Kask
Statistics Estonia
Head of Population and Social Statistics Department
Tel +372 625 9220