Population of Latvia set to fall below Estonia's in a few decades' time

Flags of the three Baltic States, from left, Estonia, Latvia and LIthuania.
Flags of the three Baltic States, from left, Estonia, Latvia and LIthuania. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Latvia's current population of 1.9 million is forecast to drop to a million by mid-century, below Estonia's predicted to stand at 1.28 million (slightly down from the current 1.3 million), LSM reports on its English-language page.

Citing data from Eurostat, LSM adds that while Estonia and Lithuania, too, will see a fall in population – as in fact will the entire EU – in the coming decades, the graph for Latvia will be particularly steep, falling to 1.5 million by 2045, and 1.16 million by 2100, according to baseline predictions from Eurostat. 

Lithuania is expected to remain the most populous of the Baltic States, though by 2100, its population, too, will have fallen, from the current level of 2.8 million, to around 1.7 million – which in itself is smaller than Latvia's current population, and only a few hundred thousand higher than Estonia's current figure.

Further afield within the EU, Bulgaria and Croatia will see even larger falls in population, by -11 percent and -10 percent respectively (Latvia's figure is -9 percent), and the EU as a whole will see a 6 percent fall in population, between January 1, 2022 and January 1, 2100, Eurostat says.

This represents 27.3 million fewer people across the EU, which currently has a population of 451 million (January 1, 2023 Eurostat estimate).

Right now, the EU's population has been rising, after a slight fall in the Covid years of 2020-2021, due mainly to the arrival of large numbers of people from Ukraine, a candidate EU member state itself, following the full-scale Russian invasion from February 2022.

The EU's population is projected to peak at 453 million (2026) then start to decline, reaching a projected level of 420 million in 210..

The above data comes from Eurostat recently published population projections and based on assumptions of partial convergence of EU countries' fertility, mortality and migration patterns. 

The 2100 pyramid clearly shows development towards a shrinking and aging society in the EU, Eurostat says, with falls in the shares of children and young people below 20 and those at working age only partially offset by ruses in the shares of those aged 65 or more.

Contrary to the picture in 2022, in 2100 the population pyramid will not start contracting after the age of 55, but will remain relatively stable until around 85 years of age, while the oldest demographic, those aged 100 year, will widen, particularly in respect of women of that age.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

Source: LSM, Eurostat

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