Migration played small part in Dutch population growth

Multicultural Crowd (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/mattbuck)Multicultural Crowd (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/mattbuck)

Migration had only a small effect on the Netherlands population between 2000 and 2015. In this period 72 percent of population growth in the Netherlands could be attributed to natural increase - the number of births minus the number of deaths. The Dutch population grew by 6.5 percent, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Monday.

In the European Union the population increased with just over 4.5 percent between 2000 and 2015. Migration played a much bigger part in the population growth of Europe as a whole. Only about 20 percent of the population growth was due to natural increase, the other four fifths was migration.

In the past few years migration played a much bigger role in the Netherlands' population growth, particularly because of the large number of refugees fleeing to the country from war-torn Syria. The number of migrant workers also increased, while the number of births fell and emigration remained level.

In 2015 the natural growth was very low, while the growth due to migration was high.  The Netherlands' population count hit 17 million on March 21st.