Press Release

On current trends of population migration in 2010

Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) has compiled data on population long-term migration in Latvia in 2010. CSB acquired statistical data by processing the information of the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs (OCMA) register on persons, who have declared their place of residence, and persons, who had left the country.In accordance with the UNO Recommendations and European Parliament and Council Regulation on Community statistics on migration, in statistics long-term international migrants are persons arriving in a country or administrative territory with a purpose to stay for a permanent residence or to stay for at least one year, as well as persons who are leaving it to go to other permanent residence.

The compiled data show that in previous year due to the long-term migration the population in Latvia reduced by 7912 persons, and that is more than in 2009, when the population of Latvia because of this factor decreased by 4700 persons.

In 2010 2790 persons from 68 countries arrived for the residence in Latvia (3.8% more compared to 2009), but 10.7 thousand persons departed for permanent residence in 86 countries (44.9% more than in 2009).  49% of migrants came from the countries of the European Union (in 2009 – 55%), but 66%, in turn, emigrated to these countries (in 2009 - 56%).

Population international long-term migration in 2000 - 2010 (persons)

Countries chosen most by the Latvian emigrants still were United Kingdom (2.9% thousand), Russia (1.6 thousand) and Ireland (1.1 thousand). Emigration to United Kingdom grew 2.2 times, to Denmark - 2.1 time, to USA - 2 times, to Ireland - 1.9 times, to France - 1.6 times.

Out of the international migrants of 2010 68% of the emigrants and 24% of the immigrants had Latvian citizenship. Immigrants were mainly men – 52.8%, but majority of the emigrants (54.2%) were women.

When analyzing the data of 2010 on marital status of the international migrants, it can be seen that the highest share among both immigrants and emigrants is comprised by single persons, respectively 53.0% and 53.6%. The share of married persons among immigrants was 33.0%, but among emigrants - 33.1%.

Age specific rates of immigrants and emigrants in 2010

Age group


In per cent


In per cent

Before working age (0-14 years)





At working age (15-61 year)





Above working age (62+)





As it can be seen in the table, the share of children in immigration was higher then their share in emigration.Moreover, among population at working age there were 5 times more emigrants than immigrants, among population at retirement age the number of emigrants exceeded the number of immigrants 1.8 times.The rather high number of children among immigrants mainly can be explained with the declaration of the children, who were born abroad, in their parent place of residence in Latvia.

Still, when analysing the information characterising the emigration, it may be concluded that nevertheless the Section 15 of the Chapter IV of the Population Register Law sets that person having Latvian nationality and who is living abroad for more than six months, has an obligation to inform the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs on the change of the place of residence, but when leaving the country, not all residents are doing so.Therefore, more precise information on the number of emigrants will be obtained after the results of the Population and Housing Census 2011 are compiled.

When analyzing the internal population migration in Latvia, it is obvious that in 2010 38.1 thousand persons changed their permanent place of residence from one administrative territory to another, and it is 1.9 thousand persons less than in 2009.The trend of internal migration to move for life to the country capital and Pieriga region was still recorded – in 2010 8.2 thousand persons arrived for life in Riga, but 11.1 thousand persons - in Pieriga statistical region.Also a trend when Riga residents are moving to Pieriga region can be observed (in 2009 – 5.8 thousand persons).Total internal population net migration in 2010 was positive only in Pieriga statistical region (2141 person), as well as in some cities under state jurisdiction:Jūrmala (380 persons), Valmiera (23), Daugavpils (22) and Ventspils (12).


Prepared by Population Statistics Section

Release date
Share this press release:

Statistical themes related to this press release