Since the population growth began almost a decade ago, the Faroese population has increased by 6,500 people, or 14%. The growth has slowed down somewhat recently. The excess of births over deaths dropped significantly at the start of 2022. Although this drop was to some extent offset by increased net migration, this led to a decrease in the annual population growth. The excess of births has increased again in recent months, while net migration has declined slightly. The result is that the slow population growth is continuing.
The population trend is determined by net migration, i.e. the difference between the number of immigrants and the number of emigrants, and the excess of live births over deaths. The population growth in the past year comes from an excess of births of 180 people and a net migration figure of 411 people. The table below shows a decrease in net migration and an increase in the excess of births, compared with the previous 12-month period.
No change in net migration
The trends in the graph below indicate little change in the difference between immigration and emigration in recent months. The immigration trend declined somewhat last autumn. It has been stable since then, as has the emigration trend. This has resulted in a slight drop in net migration, but this figure now appears stable.
Higher excess of births due to decreasing death rate
The trends in the graph below indicate that the difference in the number of live births and deaths has increased in recent months. This slow increase comes in the wake of last year’s big decrease in the excess of births, caused by fewer births and unusually high death rates. The death rate has gone down again in recent months. Together with a steadier trend in birth rates, this has resulted in a slight increase in the excess of live births over deaths.
Non-Danish citizens account for population growth
The past five years have seen a substantial increase in the number of people with non-Danish citizenship. Danish citizens have for years been contributing to the population growth, but this was not the case last year, as shown in the graph below.
Growth in most municipalities
The population grew in 17 out of the 29 municipalities in the past year. Tórshavn, Runavík and Klaksvík municipalities saw the highest growth, followed by Sjóvar and Nes municipalities, which also enjoyed high relative population growth.
The greatest population decline was recorded in Hvalba and Eystur municipalities.
The table below shows the population across the 29 municipalities, with details for each town and village on 1 May 2022 and 1 May 2023.
Population figures have a one-month lag
The figures have a one-month lag due to delays in registrations, especially regarding address changes, where many registrations are made after the month of address change has ended. To accommodate as many corrections as possible, there is a one-month lag in the data.
About the population figures
The population is defined as all individuals registered in the national register as residents of the Faroe Islands. Population data includes date of birth, gender, place of birth, citizenship, relationship status, and, where applicable, information on immigration and emigration, domestically as well as between the Faroe Islands and other nations.
About the trend
The trend describes the population trend by adjusting for seasonal effects and other error components in the population figure.