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Malta Had Highest Population Growth in Europe Since 2013, Rise of 266% in Foreign-Born Residents

According to statistics published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, Malta is ahead of every other country within Europe in terms of population change over the last 10 years, with a population growth of 28.3%.

The two countries behind Malta, making up the top three in terms of population growth, were Luxembourg at 23% and Iceland at 20.5%, two of the other smallest countries in Europe. Turkey and Ireland followed at 12.76% and 12.68%.

Several countries were found to have decreased in population change over the last 10 years, ranging from Italy’s decrease of -1.49% to Moldova’s significant decrease of -29.4% in population change.

Eurostat’s figures showed a general trend of a decrease in population change across Eastern European countries.

Based on Eurostat statistics, Malta had a population of 422,509 at the beginning of 2013. That same statistic shows that as of 1 January of this year Malta had a population of 542,051. That is an increase of 119,542 over 10 years, 21,080 of which was over one year between 2022 and 2023.

Eurostat figures showed that in 2011, Malta had a foreign-born population of 33,591 people. This number has increased to just under 122,930 as of Eurostat’s most recent statistics analysing foreign-born populations in Europe in 2022. This is an increase of 266%.

Malta is notoriously densely populated and this trend of significant population growth is further contributing to that notoriety. This means that the smallest country within the EU in terms of land size is experiencing the most proportional population growth. In comparison, France, which is the largest country within the EU in terms of land size, had a growth of 3.76% throughout the last 10 years.

According to a report published by the National Statistics Office, 83.1% of the total migrants in 2022 were Third Country Nationals. Malta’s population at the beginning of 2022 was listed as just under 520,971 by Eurostat, meaning that around 23.6% of Malta’s population in 2022 was foreign-born. The NSO also said that males accounted for 65.8% of migrants coming to Malta in 2022.

The most common age group within the Maltese islands is that of men and women aged 30 to 34, the NSO found in December of 2022. That age group consisted of 52,843 people, meaning that 9.74% of the population of Malta at the start of 2023 was aged 30 to 34.

The significant growth of Malta’s population has been an ongoing talking point within national politics for some time now with Opposition leader Bernard Grech saying that the country needs to move away from a “quantity-focused economy” and shift towards quality.

Finance Minister Clyde Caruana has said that Malta needs an overhaul of its economic model as projections show that the country’s population would have to expand to 800,000 by 2040 to maintain the current rate of economic growth.

Source : Independet