Published: 21 March 2014

Foreign-language speakers account for 90 per cent of the population growth in 2013

According to Statistics Finland's statistics on the population structure, the official total population of Finland at the end of 2013 was 5,451,270, of whom 2,680,364 were men and 2,770,906 women. In the course of 2013, Finland’s population grew by 24,596 persons. The number of people whose native language is a foreign language grew by 22,119, which represented 90 per cent of the population growth. The number of people whose native language is Finnish grew by 2,514, those with Swedish as their native language decreased by 67, and the number of people that speak Sami as their native language grew by 30.

Change in the population by native language in 1990 to 2013

Change in the population by native language in 1990 to 2013

Seventy-six per cent of population growth occurred in Uusimaa, the population grew only in every third municipality

During 2013, the population grew in 10 and diminished in nine regions. In absolute numbers, the population grew most in Uusimaa, by 18,638 persons, in Pirkanmaa, by 3,598 persons and in North Ostrobothnia, by 2,617 persons. The relative population increase was also highest in Uusimaa, 1.2 per cent.

The biggest absolute decrease in population was seen in Etelä-Savo (908 persons), Kainuu (710 persons) and Kymenlaakso (576 persons). In relative numbers, the population decreased most in Kainuu, by 0.9 per cent.

During 2013, the population grew in 106 and diminished in 213 municipalities. Helsinki had the biggest absolute increase in population, 8,696 persons, followed by Espoo, 3,929 persons and Tampere, 3,025 persons. Salo had the biggest absolute decrease in population (380 persons), followed by Kouvola (370 persons).

Examined by municipality in Mainland Finland, Lemi (2.3 per cent), Kauniainen (2.1 per cent) and Luoto (2.0 per cent) had the largest relative increases in population. Examined by municipality in Mainland Finland, the largest relative decreases in population occurred in Karijoki, down by 3.4 per cent and Kivijärvi, by 3.4 per cent.

Number of foreign-language speakers already almost equal to that of Swedish speakers

The number of foreign-language speakers stood at 289,068 at the end of 2013, representing 5.3 per cent of the population. There were 4,869,362 persons that spoke Finnish as their native language (89.3 per cent of the population), 290,910 Swedish speakers (5.3 per cent) and 1,930 Sami speakers (0.04 per cent). It is expected that the number of foreign-language speakers will exceed the number of persons whose native language is Swedish in February to March 2014.

The largest group of foreign-language speakers are those whose native language is Russian, numbering 66,379 persons. The next largest foreign-language groups spoke Estonian (42,936 persons), Somali (15,789 persons), English (15,570 persons) and Arabic (13,170 persons).

Demographic dependency ratio at its highest in 51 years

At the end of 2013, there were 895,021 children aged under 15 in Finland and 3,499,702 persons aged between 15 and 64. Persons aged 65 or over numbered 1,056,547 at the end of 2013. The demographic dependency ratio, that is, the number of those aged 15 or under and 65 or over per 100 working age persons was 55.8 at the end of 2013. The demographic dependency ratio was last higher than this in 1962. During our independence, the demographic dependency ratio was at its highest in 1917 (67.6) and at its lowest in 1984 (46.7).

Examined by area, the demographic dependency ratio was highest in the regions of Etelä-Savo, 65.1 and South Ostrobothnia, 63.5. The demographic dependency ratio was lowest in the region of Uusimaa, 48.3. Examined by municipality, the demographic dependency ratio was highest in Luhanka (103.5), Kuhmoinen (94.4), and Kökar (84.6), and lowest in Helsinki (42.6), Tampere (45.6), and Jyväskylä (47.4).

 

The demographic dependency ratio by region 1983–2013

Region Year
  1983 1993 2003 2013
dependency ratio    dependency ratio    dependency ratio    dependency ratio   
WHOLE COUNTRY 46,9 49,3 49,7 55,8
Uusimaa 43,2 43,1 43,3 48,3
Varsinais-Suomi 48,9 50,5 50,4 56,6
Satakunta 47,4 50,2 53,3 62,8
Kanta-Häme 48,2 52,6 54,3 60,1
Pirkanmaa 47,0 49,7 49,5 55,6
Päijät-Häme 46,1 48,2 50,7 60,1
Kymenlaakso 46,3 49,7 52,8 61,4
South Karelia 46,6 49,8 52,5 60,6
Etelä-Savo 47,1 52,2 56,1 65,1
Pohjois-Savo 47,4 51,6 52,6 58,1
North Karelia 47,2 52,5 52,6 58,3
Central Finland 47,2 51,2 50,8 57,9
South Ostrobothnia 52,0 57,3 57,2 63,5
Ostrobothnia 54,0 56,7 56,4 61,1
Central Ostrobothnia 52,5 54,5 54,5 63,4
North Ostrobothnia 50,5 53,4 51,8 58,2
Kainuu 45,2 50,5 53,5 61,6
Lapland 44,2 49,0 51,3 57,6
Åland 53,3 53,6 52,7 56,6

 

Persons with no religious affiliation already number 1.2 million

The Population Information System includes data on whether a person is a member of a religious community registered in Finland. The number of persons with no religious affiliation exceeded the one million mark in 2010 and at the end of 2013, they numbered 1.2 million. Thus, every fifth person in Finland is not a member of a religious community registered in Finland. In 1990, nine out of ten persons in Finland belonged to a religious community.

At the end of 2013, there were 1,203,687 persons with no religious affiliation. The share of those with no religious affiliation was clearly higher among men, at 25.5 per cent, than among women, 18.8 per cent. There were also large regional differences. In the region of Uusimaa, the share of population with no religious affiliation was 31.0 per cent, while in South Ostrobothnia the respective share was 10.4 per cent. Of foreign-language speakers, 84.1 per cent are not members of any religious community registered in Finland.


Source: Population Structure 2013, Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Markus Rapo 09 1734 3238, vaesto.tilasto@stat.fi

Director in charge: Riitta Harala

Publication in pdf-format (17 pages 406.0 kB)

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Updated 21.3.2014

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Population structure [e-publication].
ISSN=1797-5395. 2013. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 22.12.2014].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/vaerak/2013/vaerak_2013_2014-03-21_tie_001_en.html.

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