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Encyclopedia > Demographics of the European Union
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Life in the European Union

The demographics of the European Union show a highly populated, culturally diverse union of 27 member states. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Citizenship of the Union was introduced by the Maastricht Treaty signed in 1992. ... Cultural cooperation in the European Union has become a community competency since its inclusion in 1992 in the Maastricht Treaty. ... The European Union (EU) was created by six founding states in 1958 (following the earlier establishment by the same six states of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952) and has grown to 27 member states. ... For other uses, see Euro (disambiguation) or EUR (disambiguation). ... Foreign relations of the European Union Foreign relations of Austria Foreign relations of Belgium Foreign relations of Cyprus Foreign relations of the Czech Republic Foreign relations of Denmark Foreign relations of Estonia Foreign relations of Finland Foreign relations of France Foreign relations of Germany Foreign relations of Greece Foreign relations... This is the history of the European Union. ... This article or section should be merged with List of European Union-related topics The European Union has several institutions: The European Parliament The European Council The Council of the European Union (or Council of Ministers) The European Commission The European Court of Justice (incorporating the Court of First Instance... The European Union or EU is a supranational and international organization of 27 member states. ... Statistics in the European Union are collected by Eurostat. ... EU member states and candidates Current members There are currently 25 member states in the European Union. ...

As of January 1, 2006, the population of the EU was about 493 million people[1]. Many countries are expected to experience a decline in population over the coming decades,[2], though this could be offset with new countries planning to join the EU within the next 20 years. January 1 is the first day of the calendar year in both the Julian and Gregorian calendars. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ...

The most populous member state is Germany, with an estimated 82 million people. France and Ireland have the highest birth-rates. [3]

Population figures in the table below are the latest available for each country (some are 2006 estimates, other are 2007 estimates).

Member State Population
in millions
% of EU
% of EU
Pop. density
European Union European Union 494.8 100% 4 422 773 100% 112
Flag of Austria Austria 8.3 1.7% 83 858 1.9% 99
 Belgium 10.5 2.1% 30 510 0.7% 344
 Bulgaria 7.4 1.5% 110 912 2.5% 70
 Cyprus 0.8 0.2% 9 250 0.2% 84
 Czech Republic 10.3 2.1% 78 866 1.8% 131
Flag of Denmark Denmark 5.4 1.1% 43 094 1.0% 126
 Estonia 1.4 0.3% 45 226 1.0% 29
 Finland 5.3 1.1% 337 030 7.6% 16
Flag of France France[4] 63.4 12.8% 643 548 14.6% 99
Flag of Germany Germany 82.3 16.6% 357 021 8.1% 231
Flag of Greece Greece 11.1 2.2% 131 940 3.0% 84
Flag of Hungary Hungary 10.1 2.0% 93 030 2.1% 108
 Ireland 4.2 0.8% 70 280 1.6% 60
Flag of Italy Italy 58.8 11.9% 301 320 6.8% 195
Flag of Latvia Latvia 2.3 0.5% 64 589 1.5% 35
Flag of Lithuania Lithuania 3.4 0.7% 65 200 1.5% 52
Flag of Luxembourg Luxembourg 0.5 0.1% 2 586 0.1% 181
 Malta 0.4 0.1% 316 0.0% 1 261
Flag of Netherlands Netherlands 16.4 3.3% 41 526 0.9% 394
 Poland 38.1 7.7% 312 685 7.1% 122
Flag of Portugal Portugal 10.6 2.1% 92 931 2.1% 114
Flag of Romania Romania 21.6 4.4% 238 391 5.4% 91
Flag of Spain Spain 44.7 9.0% 504 782 11.4% 87
 Slovakia 5.4 1.1% 48 845 1.1% 111
 Slovenia 2.0 0.4% 20 253 0.5% 99
Flag of Sweden Sweden 9.1 1.8% 449 964 10.2% 20
Flag of United Kingdom United Kingdom 60.7 12.3% 244 820 5.5% 246


Image File history File links European_flag. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Austria. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Belgium_(civil). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Bulgaria_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Cyprus_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Czech_Republic_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Denmark. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Estonia_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Finland_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_France. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Greece. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Hungary. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Ireland_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Latvia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Lithuania. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Luxembourg. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Malta_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Netherlands. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Poland_corrected_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Portugal. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Romania. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Spain. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Slovakia_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Slovenia_(bordered). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Sweden. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ...

Most Populous Urban Areas

The following is a list of the ten most populous areas in the European Union, with their population according to 2005 estimates. Noting However, that whilst Paris has a larger population in its official city boundaries, the actual greater urban area of London has a larger population than Paris, thus making London the biggest urban area. This is a list of all the urban areas of the European Union which have more than 750,000 inhabitants in 2005. ...

Rank Urban Area Population
(2005 est.)
Change p.a.
(1990s avg.)
1 Paris, France 10 136 000 0.21%
2 London, United Kingdom 8 505 000 0.68%
3 Ruhr area-Essen-Dortmund-Duisburg, Germany 5 214 000 – 0.14%
4 Madrid, Spain 5 078 000 0.32%
5 Milan, Italy 4 282 280 0.00%
6 Barcelona, Spain 4 043 000 – 0.35%
7 Berlin, Germany 3 764 000 0.12%
8 Upper Silesian Metropolitan Area, Poland 3 487 000 – 0.95%
9 Rotterdam-The Hague, Netherlands 3 345 000 0.50%
10 Athens, Greece 3 247 000 0.37%

Image File history File links Flag_of_France. ... City flag City coat of arms Motto: Fluctuat nec mergitur (Latin: Tossed by the waves, she does not sink) Paris Eiffel tower as seen from the esplanade du Trocadéro. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany. ... Map of the Ruhr Area The Ruhr Area (German Ruhrgebiet, colloquially Ruhrpott or Kohlenpott or simply Pott) is an urban area in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, consisting of a number of large (former) industrial cities bordered by the rivers Ruhr to the south, Rhine to the west, and Lippe to... Essen is a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. ... Dortmund is a city in Germany, located in the Bundesland of North Rhine-Westphalia, in the Ruhr area. ... Duisburg is a German city and port in the western part of the Ruhr Area (Ruhrgebiet) in North Rhine-Westphalia. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Spain. ... Motto: De Madrid al Cielo (From Madrid to Heaven) Location Coordinates: Country Spain Autonomous Community Comunidad Autónoma de Madrid Province Madrid Administrative Divisions 21 Neighborhoods 127 Founded 9th century Government  - Mayor Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón (PP) Area  - Land 607 km² (234. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Italy. ... Milan (Italian: ; Lombard: Milán (listen)) is one of the biggest cities in Italy, located in the plains of Lombardy. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Spain. ... Location Coordinates : Time Zone : CET (GMT +1) - summer: CEST (GMT +2) General information Native name Barcelona (Catalan) Spanish name Barcelona Nickname Ciutat Comtal (Catalan) Ciudad Condal (Spanish) Postal code 08001–08080 Area code 34 (Spain) + 93 (Barcelona) Website http://www. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Germany. ... Berlin is the capital city and one of the sixteen states of the Federal Republic of Germany. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Poland. ... Historical region Silesia Voivodship Silesian Status Agglomeration Area ca. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_Netherlands. ... Rotterdam Location Coat of arms The coat of arms of Rotterdam. ... Arms of The Hague Flag of The city of The Hague. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Greece. ... Athens (Greek: Αθήνα - Athína) is the largest city and capital of Greece, located in the Attica prefecture of Southern Greece. ...


There is substantial movement of people within the Union i.e. internal migration; this occurs in strong patterns:

  • from former industrialized areas in the Benelux, Britain and Germany to the Sun belts in Spain and Italy.[1]
  • from poorer eastern states of the EU to the richer countries of the western EU (UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy)

Satellite image of the Benelux countries Belgium Netherlands Luxembourg Benelux Benelux (or Bénélux) is an economic union in Western Europe comprising three neighbouring monarchies, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg. ...

Immigration & Emigration

There are currently more people immigrating into the European Union than there are emigrating from it. Immigration is a controversial issue in many member states such as Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. A memorial statue in Hanko, Finland, commemorating the thousands of emigrants who left the country to start a new life in the United States Emigration is the act of nolan muir the phenomenon of leaving ones native country to settle abroad. ... A controversy is a contentious dispute, a disagreement over which parties are actively arguing. ...

Spain in particular receives most of the immigrants coming illegally to Europe from Africa, probably due to its large coastal area and its proximity and borders to Morocco at Ceuta and Melilla; African immigrants try to enter the country by boat from Morocco or Senegal or by jumping the border fences. During the first weekend of September 2006, more than 1,300 illegal immigrants arrived on beaches in the Canary Islands [5] (Spanish) and estimations are that between 50,000 and 70,000 people enter illegally the European Union through Spanish borders or beaches. Border fences have been built at both the Ceuta and Melilla borders in an attempt to stop illegal entrance to the country. Illegal inmigration is an issue in Spanish politics, and also a big human rights problem, since many people die during the journey. Spain has been Europe's largest absorber of migrants for the past six years, with its immigrant population increasing fourfold as 2.8 million people have arrived, mostly from Latin America. Spectacular growth in Spain's immigrant population comes as the country's economy has created more than half of all the new jobs in the European Union over the past five years. [2]. Separation barriers (separation walls, security fences) are constructed to limit the movement of people across a certain line or border or to separate two populations. ... The Ceuta border fence is a separation barrier between Morocco and the Autonomous City of Ceuta, in Spain. ... The Melilla border fence is a separation barrier between Morocco and Melillas city, in Spain. ... Parliamentary democracy was restored following the death of General Franco in 1975, who had ruled since the end of the civil war in 1939. ... Human rights are rights which some hold to be inalienable and belonging to all humans. ...

In other countries, such as Ireland or Portugal, inmigration is not seen as such a big issue, probably due to those countries' history of emigration. Spain also has past history of emigration too, especially in the 1960s during Franco's dictatorship, but the fact that it receives the most immigrants in all of the EU has made the problem grow more important in political debate.

The net immigration rate for the EU is ~ 1.5 migrants per 1,000 head of population (2006 estimates).[6] This figure is for migration into and out of the European Union, and therefore excludes any internal movements between member states.


The EU has significant religious diversity, mirroring its diverse history and culture. A nominal majority of the population professes Christianity, predominantly Roman Catholicism, Protestantism and Eastern Orthodoxy. Despite this, not all EU nations have Christian majorities (in the Czech Republic and Estonia, for example, a majority has no religious affiliation). Christianity is a monotheistic[1] religion centered on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as presented in the New Testament. ... The Roman Catholic Church, most often spoken of simply as the Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with over one billion members. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... ...

The recent influx of immigrants to the affluent EU nations has brought in various religions of their native homelands, including Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, the Baha'i faith and Sikhism. Judaism has had a long history in Europe and has coexisted with the native populations for centuries, despite centuries of discrimination against Jewish people and several attendant periods of persecution or genocide by European rulers. As the Christian churches have historically wielded much power in Europe, reaction to this has allowed secularism to plant deep roots on European soil which has contributed to the rise in atheism and agnosticism. Many people have no religion. Islam (Arabic:  ) is a monotheistic religion based upon the teachings of Muhammad, a 7th century Arab religious and political figure. ... Buddhism is a dharmic, non-theistic religion and a philosophy. ... Hinduism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Known in India as the Lotus Temple, the Bahai House of Worship attracts an average of three and a half million visitors a year. ... Sikhism (IPA: or ; Punjabi: , , IPA: ) is a religion that began in fifteenth century Northern India with the teachings of Nanak and nine successive gurus. ... Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people. ... Secularity is the state of being without religious or spiritual qualities. ... The 18th-century French author Baron dHolbach was one of the first self-described atheists. ... Agnosticism (from the Greek a, meaning without, and Gnosticism or gnosis, meaning knowledge). ...


The first official languages of each of the 27 member countries has the status of an official language of the European Union. In total there are 23, with Irish, Bulgarian and Romanian gaining official language status on January 1, 2007, when the last two countries joined the union. Chameleon, a symbol of the multilingualism of the European Union. ... January 1 is the first day of the calendar year in both the Julian and Gregorian calendars. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ...

English is the most spoken language in the EU, being spoken by around 51% of its population. This high proportion is because 38% of EU citizens speak it as a language other than their mother tongue (i.e. second or foreign language). German is the most spoken first language, spoken by 18% of the population. The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... A second language is any language other than the first, or native, language learned; it is typically used because of geographical or social reasons. ... A foreign language is a language not spoken by the indigenous people of a certain place: for example, English is a foreign language in Japan. ... “Native Language” redirects here. ...

Demographic Future

The EU faces strengths and challenges in its demographic future. Most concerns center around two related issues: an aging population and overall population decline.

The 2006 birth rate is 10 births per 1000 population, while the death rate is 10.1 deaths per 1000 people, making 2006 the first time in modern (non war) history where more people have died in Europe than were born. [7] The total fertility rate is an internationally low 1.47 children born per female, [8] where fertility rates above 2 per female are generally needed to maintain the current population. These figures mean the population of the EU is expected to decrease, while also suggesting the average age of European society will grow ever higher. While this decline in population could be halted by allowing substantial immigration into the EU, this remains a difficult solution that many refuse to accept. [9]

A low fertility rate means retirement age workers are not entirely replaced by younger workers joining the workforce. The EU faces a potential future dominated by an ever-increasing population of retired citizens, without enough younger workers to fund (via taxes) retirement programs or other state welfare agendas. [10]

A low fertility rate, without supplement from immigration, also suggests a declining overall EU population[11], which further suggests economic contraction or even economic crisis. [12] While some media have noted the 'baby crisis' in the EU[13], and some governments have noted the problem[14], the UN and other multinational authorities continue to warn of an impending crisis.[15]

Miscellaneous statistics

Age structure: (2006 est.)

  • 0-14 years: 16.03% (male 37,608,010/female 35,632,351)
  • 15-64 years: 67.17% (male 154,439,536/female 152,479,619)
  • 65 years and over: 16.81% (male 31,515,921/female 45,277,821)

Birth rate: 10.5 births/1,000 population [2005]

Death rate: 9.6 deaths/1,000 population [2005]

Net migration rate: 3.6 migrant(s)/1,000 population [2005]

Marriage rate: 4.8 marriages/1,000 population [2005]

Divorce rate: 2.0 divorces/1,000 population [2005]

Sex ratio: (2006 est.) Sex ratio by country for total population. ...

  • at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female
  • under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
  • 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
  • 65 years and older: 0.69 male(s)/female
  • total population: 0.96 male(s)/female

Infant mortality rate: [2005]

  • total: 4.5 deaths/1,000 live births
  • male: -
  • female: -

Life expectancy: [2005] World map of life expectancy, 2005 Life expectancy is a statistical measure defined as the expected (mean) survival of human beings based upon a number of criteria such as gender and geographic location. ...

  • total population: 78.9 years
  • male: 75.8 years
  • female: 81.9 years

Total fertility rate: 1.52 children born/woman [2005] The (total) fertility rate of a population is the average number of child births per woman. ...

Live Births outside marriage: 33.0% of total live births [2005]

See also

The demographics of the member states of the European Union:

The population of the Netherlands is concentrated on a limited territory. ...


  1. ^ "Total Population as of 01.01.06", EUROSTAT. Retrieved 12 November 2006.
  2. ^ "The EU's baby blues", BBC News, 27 March 2006. Retrieved 10 July 2006.
  3. ^ "France claims EU fertility crown", BBC News, 16 January 2007. Retrieved 10 February 2007.
  4. ^ Figures for France include the four overseas departments (French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Réunion) which are integral parts of the European Union, but do not include the overseas collectivities and territories, which are not part of the European Union. Figures for Metropolitan France proper are: population 61.5 million, area 551 695 km², and population density 113/km².
  5. ^ Canaries migrant surge tops 1,300, BBC News, 4 September 2006, accessed 4 September 2006
  6. ^ https://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/ee.html
  7. ^ https://cia.gov/cia//publications/factbook/geos/ee.html
  8. ^ https://cia.gov/cia//publications/factbook/geos/ee.html
  9. ^ http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/01/25/business/dmigration.php
  10. ^ http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/epc/epc_ageing_en.htm
  11. ^ http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/sources/docoffic/official/reports/p142_en.htm
  12. ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/population/Story/0,,184292,00.html
  13. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4768644.stm
  14. ^ http://www.businessweek.com/globalbiz/content/jan2007/gb20070130_790576.htm
  15. ^ UN

A collectivité doutre-mer (in English Overseas Community) or COM, is an administrative division of France. ... The term Overseas territory (French: Territoire doutre-mer or TOM), is an administrative division of France and is currently only applied to the French Southern Territories. ... Metropolitan France (French: France métropolitaine, or just la Métropole) is the part of France in Europe, including Corsica, as opposed to the overseas departments and overseas territories, which, while integral parts of the French Republic, are regarded as Overseas France (la France doutre-mer, or more colloquially...

See also

  Results from FactBites:
European Union ~ Stephen's Web ~ by Stephen Downes (4575 words)
One such attempt to unite Europeans was the European Coal and Steel Community which while having the modest aim of centralised control of the previously national coal and steel industries of the its member states was declared to be "a first step in the federation of Europe".
The European Union was formally established when the Maastricht Treaty came into force on 1 November 1993 and in 1995 Austria, Sweden and Finland joined the newly established Union.
The European Union's competence in the justice and home affairs area originates from the signing of the Schengen Agreement in 1985 on the gradual abolition of border controls between six of the then ten European Community member states.
Demographics of the European Union - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (530 words)
This figure is for immigration and emigration into the European Union, and therefore excludes any internal movements between member states.
Due to the significant and inseparable role played in European history and cultures, the majority of the population in the EU profess Christianity, predominantly Roman Catholicism, Protestantism and Eastern Orthodoxy.
As the EU mainly consists of fully-developed nations, secularism has planted deep roots on European soil which contributes to the rise in atheism and agnosticism.
  More results at FactBites »



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