Migration drives record high in Scotland’s population

European Economic Area inward migration supports population levels

A record high in Scotland’s population has been driven by inward migration, according to data published today by the National Records of Scotland (NRS). The latest estimate of Scotland’s population (on 30 June 2016) is 5,404,700 – the highest ever and an increase of 31,700 people (0.6%) since 30 June 2015.
Also published today, for the first time, is analysis of European Economic Area (EEA) born residents living in Scotland by local authority area. The data, based on the latest 2011 Census figures, shows that people born in the EEA live in every local authority, from 7.2% of the population of Aberdeen City to 0.9% in East Ayrshire.
According to these figures, 67% of EEA-born residents in Scotland aged 16 and over were in employment compared to 58% of the total population of Scotland aged 16 and over. Also, more EEA-born residents in Scotland between 16 -74 years are educated to degree level (46%) compared to 27% for all people aged 16-74 in Scotland.
Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop, said: “These figures underline the key role migration has to play in our work to grow Scotland’s population.
“It is very welcome that people are living longer but we need to ensure we can grow our working age population to support our economy and society now and in the future when we expect more people to live longer beyond retirement.
“Scotland already benefits significantly from the contribution made by people from across Europe who have chosen to live, work and study here, bringing new skills and expertise and helping to underpin future economic growth.
“The Scottish Government is committed to continuing to encourage inward migration to support further population growth.”
In the year to mid-2016, in-migration exceeded out-migration by approximately 31,700 people. This included an increase of around 22,900 from overseas and around 8,800 people from the rest of the UK.
The full publication and previous years’ population estimates can be downloaded from Mid-Year Population Estimates section of the NRS website.
Demographic and Census profiles of EEA born residents in Scotland, with information and key statistics on EEA-born residents across Scotland’s council areas, are also available on NRS website.
Council Area
Total Population
EEA born population
Percentage born in the EEA
Aberdeen City
222,793
15,993
7.2
Aberdeenshire
252,973
8,140
3.2
Angus
115,978
2,718
2.3
Argyll and Bute
88,166
2,077
2.4
City of Edinburgh
476,626
33,167
7.0
Clackmannanshire
51,442
1,137
2.2
Dumfries and Galloway
151,324
2,669
1.8
Dundee City
147,268
5,561
3.8
East Ayrshire
122,767
1,144
0.9
East Dunbartonshire
105,026
1,273
1.2
East Lothian
99,717
2,654
2.7
East Renfrewshire
90,574
1,197
1.3
Falkirk
155,990
2,712
1.7
Fife
365,198
9,196
2.5
Glasgow City
593,245
22,098
3.7
Highland
232,132
7,496
3.2
Inverclyde
81,485
852
1.0
Midlothian
83,187
1,592
1.9
Moray
93,295
2,889
3.1
Na h-Eileanan Siar
27,684
333
1.2
North Ayrshire
138,146
1,537
1.1
North Lanarkshire
337,727
4,980
1.5
Orkney Islands
21,349
324
1.5
Perth and Kinross
146,652
5,561
3.8
Renfrewshire
174,908
3,198
1.8
Scottish Borders
113,870
3,236
2.8
Shetland Islands
23,167
703
3.0
South Ayrshire
112,799
1,784
1.6
South Lanarkshire
313,830
4,163
1.3
Stirling
90,247
2,589
2.9
West Dunbartonshire
90,720
1,307
1.4
West Lothian
175,118
5,643
3.2
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