Census reveals 8.2% population growth

The population of Ireland increased by 8.2% between 2006 and 2011, according to official figures released today.

The first definitive results of the census, carried out last year, show that the number of people living here rose by 348,404.

It means the population stood at almost 4,588,252 on April 10 last year.

The total number of non-Irish nationals has increased from 419,733 to 544,357, a 29.7% increase.

The number of Irish residents who were born outside Ireland stood at 766,770 in 2011, an increase of 25% on 2006, and accounting for 17% of the population.

The groups which showed the largest increase were Romanians (up 110%), Indians (up 91%), Polish (up 83%), Lithuanians (up 40%) and Latvians (up 43%).

To see an interactive map of the population changes, click here (Flash required).

So see the full list of detailed documents provided by the CSO, click here, or use a number of census mapping tools.

There are now more women than men in the country - 42,854 more to be precise - resulting in an overall sex ratio of 98.1 males for every 100 females. This is a reversal of the situation in 2006 when the sex ratio was 100.1.

The number of divorced people has risen by 150% since 2002. The figures are up from 35,059 to 87,770. In contrast, the number of people identified as separated has levelled off and stood at 116,194, up marginally from 107,263 in 2006.

Immigration by Irish nationals was 19,593 in the year to April 2011, of which 7,338 had previously lived in the UK, followed by Australia as the second most important country of origin (3,921) and the USA in third place with 1,688.

Immigration by foreign nationals in the year to April 2011 was 33,674. The largest groups came from Poland, UK, France, Lithuania, Spain and the USA.

Other highlights from the 2011 census show:

* 514,068 Irish residents spoke a foreign language at home and that Polish was by far the most common, followed by French, Lithuanian and German.

* The number of people enumerated as Irish Travellers increased by 32% from 22,435 to 29,573.

* Almost 475,000 households are now renting their accommodation, a significant increase since Census 2006 when just over 300,000 households were renting.

* The total housing stock grew to almost two million homes, of these almost 290,000 were vacant.

* Leitrim had the highest overall vacancy rate with more than 30% of homes vacant. Donegal was next with a vacancy rate of 29%.

Deirdre Cullen from the Central Statistics Office said that the Leinster region has experienced the greatest level of growth.

"The Leinster commuter belt counties grew the strongest over the five-year period," she said.

"Laois was the fastest growing county in the country, the population of Laois increased by over 20% in the five-year period".

"The southern cities - Cork and Limerick - the population of the cities and suburbs grew slightly, but (in) the cities themselves the population declined."


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