22 December 2021, by Victoria Séveno

Projections published by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) show that the population of the Netherlands will continue to grow at a fairly steady rate, reaching 20,6 million by 2070.

Projections show population growing at faster rate than expected 

On January 1, 2021, the Netherlands recorded a population of 17.475 million, with CBS predicting at the end of last year that the population would reach 18 million by 2026, and 20 million by 2063.

In their Population Forecast for 2021 to 2070, CBS shows that the population will continue to grow at a slightly faster rate than initially anticipated last year. Whereas in December 2020, CBS predicted the number of people living in the Netherlands in 2070 would reach 19,98 million in 2063, projections now show the population size will reach this milestone by 2061.

Indeed, as a result of increased levels of immigration following the COVID-19 pandemic, CBS now reports the population of the Netherlands will grow to 20,599 million by 2070. “The population is expected to grow relatively quickly in the coming years, but the growth rate will slow after that,” statisticians at CBS write. But what does the future makeup of the Netherlands really look like? 

The Netherlands faces an ageing population

A longer life expectancy and an ageing population mean the country will see the number of deaths increase gradually again over the coming years, peaking in the late 2050s. By 2040, a quarter of the population will be over the age of 65, with the number of people over the age of 80 expected to double over the next 20 years. 

Meanwhile, the number of births registered will continue to grow over the next 20 years, but long-term projections show birth rates will not enough to compensate for the increasing number of deaths. CBS expects that, between 2040 and 2060, more deaths than births will occur.

The number of households in the Netherlands is expected to increase by almost two million by 2070; there are currently 8,1 million households, with CBS projecting it will rise to 9,8 million by 2070. The statistics office highlights an increase in the number of single-person households, many of which will be over the age of 65.

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