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The future population of Sweden 2017–2070:

Largest population increase expected among the elderly

Statistical news from Statistics Sweden 2018-04-26 9.30

In ten years, in 2028, Sweden’s population is expected to reach 11 million. According to Statistics Sweden’s most recent population projection, there will be 231 000 more children and young people, 399 000 more people aged 19 to 64, and 309 000 more people aged 65 and older compared with today. The share of people aged 80 and older will increase most, and in 2028, their share is expected to be 255 000 more people than today, an increase of 50 percent.

Population growth has been rapid in recent years. At the beginning of 2017, Sweden’s population reached 10 million and according to the projection of Sweden’s population published by Statistics Sweden today, the population will hit the 11-million mark in ten years, during 2028. After that, it will take another 20 years before the population passes 12 million, in the early 2050s. By the end of the forecast period, in 2070, the population is expected to be nearly 13 million.

The projection of the future population is based on assumptions on changes in childbearing, mortality rates, immigration and emigration.

According to estimates, in 2028

• 126 800 children will be born, which is 11 000 more than in 2017. Among these children, one out of three will have a foreign born mother, which is a slightly higher proportion than today.

• 112 000 people will immigrate, which is 32 000 fewer than in 2017. Among these people, 15 000 will have been born in Sweden and are returning, while 97 000 will have been born abroad.

• 76 000 people will emigrate, which is 30 000 more than in 2017. Among the emigrants, 22 000 will have been born in Sweden and 54 000 will have been born abroad.

• The number of deaths will be 100 000, which is 8 000 more than in 2017. Among the deaths, more than one out of four people will have been 90 years or older.

Development among different age groups

Number of children expected to increase

According to calculations in the projection, there will be 40 000 more children of preschool age, 1–5 years, and 107 000 more children of school age, 6–15 years.

More secondary school aged young people

According to estimates, there will be 73 000 more young people aged 16–18 than today, which is an increase of 22 percent. This increase is mainly due to the fact that small cohorts born around 2000 will be replaced by larger cohorts born around 2010.

More young adults aged 19–24

The number of young adults is increasing nearly as much as secondary school aged young people, and is expected to be 64 000 more than today, which corresponds to an increase of 9 percent.

More people aged 25–64, foreign born persons account for entire increase

The number of people in the most gainfully employed ages, 25–64, is expected to be 336 000 higher than today. The number of Swedish born persons in the age group is expected to be 69 000 fewer. Today, 24 percent in this age group are born abroad. According to the projection, in 2028, 30 percent of the people aged 25–64 will have been born abroad.

Smallest increase among those aged 65–79

The number of 65–79 year-olds is expected to increase by 55 000 by 2028. There will be fewer Swedish born people in this age group ten years from now, since the large cohorts born in the 1940s will be replaced by smaller cohorts born in the 1950s.

Fifty percent more people aged 80 and older

When the cohorts born in the 1940s turn 80 years, the number of people in this age class will increase. In 2017, this age group totalled over 500 000, and is expected to be 255 000 more in ten years, an increase of 50 percent. In addition to the large number of people born in this age group, rising life expectancy also contributes to this population increase. Life expectancy is increasing more sharply for men than for women, which becomes apparent in the age group 80 years and older. Today, there are 65 men for every 100 women among people aged 80 and older; in ten years, there will be 78 men for every 100 women.

Population increase lower than previously calculated

Statistics Sweden’s latest population projection was published three years ago in 2015. According to that projection, the population was expected to reach 11 million as early as 2025, and in 40 years, the population was expected to be 500 000 larger than in the current calculation.

In particular, it is assumed that the rate of childbearing among Swedish born women in the next few years will be lower than was previously assumed. This is because the decrease in the rate of childbearing among Swedish born women, which began in 2011, has continued and has been higher than assumed in the 2015 projection.

Mortality rates have shown a smaller downturn in mortality for most ages in recent years compared with earlier years. This means that, in this projection, life expectancy is not increasing at the same rate as previously assumed.

More people are also expected to emigrate than previously assumed. This is nearly exclusively due to an assumption that more foreign born persons are expected to emigrate compared with the previous projection.

The number of immigrants is most difficult to predict and is governed, in part, by laws and regulations. Especially in the years 2015–2018, it was previously assumed that more people would immigrate than was observed. Since 2015, border control has been introduced in both Sweden and the rest of Europe, which has led to decreased refugee immigration.

Definitions and explanations

The population forecast is a projection of the registered population. Persons seeking asylum are not registered; this occurs when they receive a residence permit and then they are registered in Sweden.


A more detailed report of this survey is published in The future population of Sweden 2017–2070.

Statistical Database

More information is available in the Statistical Database

Feel free to use the facts from this statistical news but remember to state Source: Statistics Sweden.

Statistical agency and producer

Statistics Sweden, Section for Coordination and Interdisciplinary Operations

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Lena Lundkvist

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