Italian population shrinks, gets older: official data
December 15, 2020 07:57 PM
Italy's population is declining and becoming steadily older, according to new figures Tuesday from the national statistics agency.
At the end of 2019, Italy had 59,641,488 residents -- some 175,000 fewer than the previous year, or a reduction of 0.3 percent, Istat said.
This represents just 207,000 more than in 2011, the year of the last census -- and is the result only of immigration, it said.
"The very slight increase in the population since 2011 can be exclusively attributed to the foreign component," the report said.
Between 2011 and 2019, the number of Italian nationals fell by almost 800,000, or 1.5 percent, despite more than one million foreigners taking Italian citizenship.
Meanwhile the number of foreign nationals living in the country rose by one million -- up 25 percent to just over five million in 2019.
The figures also confirm the trend in Italy towards an ageing population -- the average age has gone up by two years, to 45, since 2011.
The southern regions, including the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, are the youngest but have also seen their populations shrink the most.
Again migrants buck the national trend -- the average age of foreign nationals resident in Italy last year was 34.7 years, compared with 46.2 for Italian nationals.