Changes of demographic situation in Latvia in 2005

03.05.2006

The data of Central Statistical Bureau show that the number of Latvian population continued to decrease in 2005. At the beginning of 2006 it stood at 2 million 295 thousand, a drop of 11.8 thousand persons compared with the previous year. In 2005, the decline rate in the number of population was less significant compared with the previous year – 0.51% compared with 0.55% in 2004. The number of population due to natural movement (the number of deaths exceeding births) resulted in a population drop of 11.3 thousand; excess of emigration over immigration resulted in a population decrease of 0.5 thousand persons.

Most important comparative demographic development indicators

 

2000

2004

2005

 2005,
in % against
2004

Number of registered marriages

9211

10370

12544

121.0

Per 1000 population

3.9

4.5

5.5

122.2

Number of divorces

6134

5271

6341

120.3

Per 1000 population

2.6

2.3

2.8

121.7

Number of births

20248

20334

21497

105.7

Per 1000 population

8.5

8.8

9.3

105.7

Number of deaths

32205

32024

32777

102.4

Per 1000 population

13.6

13.8

14.2

102.9

Number of infant deaths

210

190

168

88.4

Per 1000 live born infants

10.4

9.3

7.8

83.9

In 2005, the number of registered marriages continued to increase, however, the number of divorces increased, too. The number of registered marriages per 1000 population was the highest during the last 12 years.

Dynamics of registered marriages and divorces per 1000 population

The average age of marrying persons increased. If 40% men and 50% women registered their first marriage at the age of 20-24 years in 2000, only 30% of newly married men and 43% of women were in this age in 2005, while 59% of bridegrooms and 44% of brides were in the age of 25–34 years. In addition, there were 134 bridegrooms and 579 brides in the age of 18–19 in 2005, and 91 brides were younger than the maturity age established in the country.

Medium age of those entered into marriage

Year

Total

First marriage

men

women

men

women

2000

32.0

29.5

26.9

24.9

2001

31.6

29.0

27.0

24.9

2002

31.9

29.3

27.5

25.4

2003

32.0

29.4

27.5

25.4

2004

32.1

29.4

27.8

25.6

2005

32.8

30.0

28.2

26.0

The increase of married status rate, as well as the growth of birth rate during recent years is to a great measure due to the relatively high birth rate in the 80-s. The youth born in the first half of the eighties have already reached the age of entering into marriage and establishing families.

In 2005, the number of newborn was 21.5 thousand, or by 1163 children more than in 2004. The birth rate per 1000 residents increased by 5.7%. The number of births per 1000 residents – 9.3 children – was the highest indicator through the last 11 years.

51.2% of the newborn were the first children in their families (52.6% in 2004). The proportion of second children amongst all newborn in 2005 was 32.0%, compared with 31.0% a year before.

The total fertility rate (average number of children that would be born to a female during her lifetime provided the birth-rate of the given year remaining at the previous level) grew by 4% in 2005 in comparison with 2004, and comprised 1.29. At the present, it only slightly exceeds half of the replacement level (2.1-2.2) necessary for exchange of generations.

Birth-rate indices

Year

Number of births
per 1000 women aged 15- 49

Total birth-rate

2000

34.2

1.24

2001

33.3

1.21

2002

33.9

1.23

2003

35.5

1.29

2004

34.3

1.24

2005

37.2

1.29

The statistical data on the ethnicity of mother at birth show that 65% of all infants were ethnic Latvians in 2005. 31% of children were born in mixed families.

In 2005, the number of deaths in Latvia comprised 32.8 thousand, or by 750 persons more than in 2004. The general mortality rate was 14.2 deaths per 1000 population, or by 2.9% higher than in the previous year.

The most prevalent cause of death in Latvia is the diseases of circulatory system. In 2005, theses diseases accounted for 18.1 thousand deaths, or 55% of the total number of deaths. The next biggest group of causes of deaths are tumours. In 2005, they accounted for 5.9 thousand deaths or 18% of the total number of deaths. The third leading cause of deaths in the structure of causes is external causes (accidents, poisoning, injuries) – they account for 3.2 thousand deaths in 2005. Last year, 564 persons committed suicide, 487 deaths were attributed to traffic accidents, 278 died of cold, 250 deaths were due to alcohol poisoning, 229 were due to violence, 199 were caused by fire.

A positive trend is being observed in fall of infant mortality. The number of infants deceased during their first year of life per 1000 live births – 7.8 deaths – is the lowest figure through the last 60 years. In comparison with 2004, infant mortality rate has decreased by 17%.

The total number of population in Riga comprised 728 thousand at the beginning of the year, and it reduced by 4.2 thousand over the year. 7.0 thousand births and 9.8 thousand deaths of residents of Riga were recorded in the previous year. In comparison with 2004, birth rate per 1000 residents in Riga increased by 6.6%, and mortality rate increased by 1.5%.

In 2005, increase of number of population was observed only in the districts of Ogre (239) and Riga (3643). The highest birth rate indices per 1000 residents were in Liepaja, and the districts of Jelgava and Riga – 11 births; the lowest birth rate was in the district of Ludza – 7 births per 1000 residents.

Mortality rates were highest in Ludza, Rezekne, and Kraslava districts (20 – 22 deaths per 1000 population). This situation was partly due to the older age of population in the said districts. In the contrary, the lowest mortality rates were observed in Riga and Ogre districts, comprising 12 deaths per 1000 population. In 2005, just like in the previous year, the number of deaths exceeded that of births in all cities and districts of Latvia.

The data for 1st quarter of this year show that the trends of birth and death rates may continue also in 2006, although the number of births is slightly less than in the corresponding period of previous year – 5.2 thousand against 5.3 thousand. The number of deaths in 1st quarter was 9.1 thousand, or by 0.3 thousand more than a year before. The number of registered marriages in the first three months of 2006 was 2.0 thousand, as compared with 1.6 thousand in the 1st quarter of previous year.

Prepared by Population Statistics Division
of Social Statistics Department
Tel. 371 7366903
Elmira Senkane