Emigration may slightly top 2008, but immigration plummets

The number of people emigrating from Latvia is on pace to slightly exceed last year’s figure, according to data compiled by the Central Statistical Bureau in Rīga. Through the first seven months of this year, emigration is up 2.4 percent over the same period in 2008.

So far this year, a total of 3,471 people have left Latvia.

At the same time, immigration to Latvia is down almost 24 percent. A total of 1,538 people have moved to the country through July, resulting in a net loss of 1,933 in population due to migration, according to data updated Aug. 27. Through the first seven months of last year, 2,020 people had immigrated.

About 6,000 people left Latvia last year, a more than 43 percent jump over 2007, when 4,183 individuals emigrated. The number of people leaving the country in 2008 saw a marked increase in August and September.

But during the past two years, immigration was steady. A total of 3,541 people moved to Latvia in 2007, while 3,465 came in 2008.

Latvia’s population stood at 2.25 million in July, according to the Central Statistical Bureau. That is about 20,000 fewer persons than two years earlier.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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