Population growth in Norway has slowed and is at its lowest level since the first quarter or 2007, reports state statistics bureau SSB. Norway’s population amounted to 5,063,709 inhabitants at the end of this year’s first quarter, an increase of just 1.2 percent (or 12,434 inhabitants) since the fourth quarter of 2012.
SSB tied the population decline to a drop in overall levels of immigration. Oslo’s city government (byrådet) also pointed to how births in the first quarter of this year fell compared with the same quarter for the last three years.
A total of 12,400 people became Norwegian citizens last year. The number was 1,900 less than in 2011.
The majority gaining Norwegian citizenship in 2012 were former Iraqi citizens, (1,640), followed by immigrants from Somalia (1,570) and Afghanistan (1,010), reported SSB. Stateless citizens and those who do not declare their country of origin numbered 915, an increase of 13.8 percent from the year before. There was also an increase in the number of children gaining citizenship, up from 33 percent in 2011 to 38 percent in 2012, reported NTB.