he CSO said today that falling immigration is slowing Irish population growth. The total number of immigrants into Ireland in the year to April 2008 fell by 26,000 to 83,800, while the number of emigrants has shown a marginal increase on the previous year to 45,300. As a result net Irish migration is estimated to have fallen from 67,300 in the year ending April 2007 to 38,500 in the most recent period.
The estimated number of births in the year to April 2008, at 72,300, was the highest since 1980, resulting in the natural increase in the population (44,600) being the main contributor to population growth.
The combined effect of the natural increase and migration resulted in a population increase of 83,100 (+1.9%) bringing the population estimate to 4.42 million in April 2008.
The main features of the 2008 figures are:
Natural increase outstripped net migration for the first time since 2004 and contributed to just over half (54%) of the population increase in the year to April 2008.
The excess of births over deaths has increased almost three fold since its low point of 16,600 in the year ending April 1994 .
While immigrants of all nationalities (apart from the UK) showed a decline, those from the EU12 countries showed the greatest fall from 53,000 in April 2007 to 34,000 in April 2008, a decline of almost 20,000.
Of the 19,800 individuals emigrating to the ‘Rest of the world’ , 11,300 are estimated to have gone to ‘Australia and Oceania’.
The overall population increase of 1.9 per cent was unevenly distributed across the regions, with the Mid-East showing the strongest growth at 3.6 per cent and Dublin showing the weakest at 0.6 per cent.