Population up by over 24 thousand in Q1

© CBS / Nikki van Toorn
In Q1 2019, the population of the Netherlands grew more rapidly than in the same quarter last year. More than 24 thousand inhabitants were added, nearly twice the number in Q1 2018. The number of immigrants was up and there were fewer deaths. This is reported by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) on the basis of provisional figures.

Population growth, Q1* (x 1,000)
 20182019
Births39.739.7
Deaths45.640.5
Immigration53.461.1
Emigration34.936.1
Growth12.624.2
* provisional figures

In the first three months of 2019, over 61 thousand immigrants registered with a Dutch municipality. Around 36 thousand people left the country. As a result, 25 thousand new Dutch inhabitants were added on balance due to external migration. Total population growth was slightly lower as the number of deaths (nearly 41 thousand) exceeded the number of births (nearly 40 thousand) by over 770. There was a greater difference in the same period last year: almost 46 thousand people passed away in Q1 while the number of live births was approximately the same as this year.

More immigrants

In Q1 2019, the population increase as a result of external migration was nearly 6.5 thousand higher than in Q1 2018, on balance. The number of immigrants was up by more than 7.5 thousand while emigration increased less rapidly: by over one thousand.

Since 2018, people with a Polish background have constituted the largest group of migrants. In the past quarter, their number was up on the same period last year. The number of Polish nationals settling in the Netherlands (over 7 thousand) exceeded the number leaving the country (just under 4 thousand). Migrants with an Indian, Syrian or Eastern European background, too, have been among the fastest growing origin groups for several years. Net migration (immigration minus emigration) among these groups was higher relative to Q1 2018 as well. Within the top ten, the number of migrants with a British background saw the largest relative growth.

Top ten migration balance by migration background* (x 1,000)
 20192018
Poland3.2512.357
(former) Soviet Union1.4141.025
United Kingdom1.3820.536
India1.3711.082
Syria1.3641.243
Romania1.3640.864
Turkey1.0630.727
Bulgaria1.0240.737
United States0.8870.619
Italy0.7290.666
* provisional figures

Not all origin groups saw an increase in immigration. Of migrants with an Eritrean background, over 500 people settled here during the first three months of this year, versus over 800 one year previously. The number of emigrants was small. On balance, there were also fewer migrants with an Ethiopian background who came to the Netherlands.

Lower year-on-year mortality

In Q1 2019, natural population growth - births minus deaths - was slightly negative at over -750. In Q1 2018, this was still -6 thousand; mortality was relatively high and there were around 5 thousand more deaths than in Q1 2019. The number of live births was more or less the same.

Since 2013, relatively few babies have been born: around 170 thousand per year. This number was still approximately 200 thousand in 2001, when population growth in the first quarter was as strong as it is now. Moreover, the likelihood of negative natural growth is greatest during the first quarter. Relatively many people pass away in this period, while the number of live births is smaller than it is during other parts of the year. Natural population growth was negative for the first time in Q1 2015; contraction was strongest in the same quarter last year.

Balance of births and deaths (x 1,000)
JaarKwartaalNatural growth
2013Q11.5
Q27.4
Q313.8
Q47.4
2014Q16.7
Q210
Q312.8
Q46.5
2015Q1-1.5
Q26.7
Q312
Q46.2
2016Q11
Q27.2
Q312.1
Q43.2
2017Q1-2.1
Q26.3
Q311
Q44.5
2018*Q1-6
Q26.9
Q310.2
Q43.5
'19*Q1-0.8
* provisional figures

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