Population projections

Please find below information on the most frequently asked questions regarding the Eurostat population projections.

Which are the most recent population projections published by Eurostat?

In February 2017, Eurostat published population projections based on 2015 data. The projections' time horizon is 2015-2080.

The population projections provide data on 29 European countries. Data is published at national level only.

As deterministic population projections, they can also be described as a ‘what-if’ analysis. Indeed they show how the population size and structure would change if the assumptions made regarding fertility, mortality and migration remained true over the whole projection period.

Why are population projections useful?

Even though they are hypothetical ‘what-if’ exercises, population projections help the public, statisticians and policymakers understand population dynamics. The usual projection period spans over several decades, sometimes up to a century. Therefore, they contribute to informed debates on demographic and societal changes which affect our everyday lives.

For example, in the European context, demographic projections enable the analysis of the long-run economic and fiscal implications of Europe's ageing population.

Where can I find the data showing the assumptions made for this round of population projections?

Underlying assumptions are presented as yearly time series from the year 2015 to the year 2080, by age and sex. The input shows:

Where can I find the projected population data?

The table Population on 1st of January by age, sex and type of projection shows the projected population by age, sex and year- ranging from 2015 up to 2081.

The table presents several types of projections:

  • baseline population projections, calculated based on the previously listed assumptions,
  • several tests, called sensitivity tests, quantifying how a change in one particular assumption will affect the baseline population figures, if:
    • Fertility would be 20% lower,
    • Mortality would be progressively lower, corresponding to a 2-year gain in life expectancy at birth by 2070,
    • Net migration would increase by one third,
    • Net migration would decrease by one third,
    • No migration would occur.

Moreover, for the baseline projections, data are available on:

  • Projected totals for live births and deaths,
  • Sizes of age groups throughout the total projected population, age dependency ratios (including old-age dependency ratio) and the median age of the population.

Which visualisations are available?

Under Visualisations you can see both historical developments and projections.

Where can I find further information on the methodology?

Further information on the methodology is available in this PDF icon file

When will the next round of Eurostat population projections become available

The next population projections are planned to be released in June 2019, for the time period 2018-2100.