Estonia’s population increases due to immigration

According to Statistics Estonia, the country’s official statistics agency, on 1 January 2022, the population of Estonia was 1,331,796, which was 1,728 people more than at the same time a year ago.

In 2021, there were 13,272 births and 18,587 deaths in Estonia. Based on the migration data, 19,524 people immigrated to Estonia and 12,481 persons emigrated from Estonia.

Terje Trasberg, a leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, said that last year stood out for an exceptionally high number of deaths, as there were 5,315 more deaths than births registered in 2021.

“The high number of deaths combined with the number of births, which was similar to the level of recent years, meant that natural increase was negative. On the other hand, net migration was again positive – 7,043 more people moved to Estonia than left for abroad. All in all, Estonia’s population increased by 1,728,” she said in a statement.

In 2022, 13,272 children were born, which is similar to the number of births in 2020 but 800 fewer than in 2019, when 14,099 children were born.

“Comparing the last two years with the pre-coronavirus years, the number of first, second and third births has decreased, but the number of fourth and more births has increased. There has been a rise in the number of women who gave birth to their first or second child at age 30-44,” Trasberg added.

The highest mortality rate since 1997

There were 18,587 deaths 2021. In the last ten years, the number of deaths has ranged between 15,000 and 16,000, and the difference from year to year has been around 300.

“The number of deaths registered last year was extraordinary – the last time mortality was this high was in 1997,” the analyst pointed out.

Tartu County was the only one with positive natural increase. “In general, natural increase is negative throughout Estonia, including the big towns. The only exceptions are rural municipalities around towns, for instance, Rae and Saue rural municipalities near Tallinn as well as Luunja and Kambja rural municipalities around Tartu,” Trasber noted.

In 2021, 19,524 people immigrated to Estonia and 12,481 people emigrated from Estonia – arrivals outnumbered departures by a third and net migration remained positive for the seventh year in a row. Most of the migrants were Estonian citizens whose net migration was positive again after a one-year break. The majority of the immigrants arrived from Finland and Ukraine and most of the emigrants departed for Finland.

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