Projecting the immigrant population of Norway by age, sex and country background

Helge Brunborg, Statistics Norway
Inger Texmon, Statistics Norway

The increasing immigration to Europe in recent years has been accompanied by a growing interest in the size and composition of the future immigrant population. This interest is based on reasons ranging from opposition to immigration, to concerns about the integration of the immigrants into the society, future labour force needs due to population ageing, and the effects of immigration on the economy. Attempts to project the immigrant projection face a number of challenges such as ethical issues, definition of the immigrant population, different categories of immigrants, modelling, data needs and assumptions. The paper present the choices made on these issues in a projection of the immigrant population of Norway, as well as major results, and a comparison of with similar projections made in other countries, in particular Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands. The assumptions are based on analyses using administrative data. One of the findings is that the fertility level declines by the duration of stay in Norway. Another finding is that there is significant re-emigration for many immigrant groups. The main results of the projections are: The immigrant population is likely to grow rapidly. In 2060 19-27 % of the population may be immigrants, up from 8per cent in 2005. It is unlikely that immigrants will constitute the majority of the population in the next 60 years, as some people are expressing concerns about. The most important (and uncertain) factor for the future size of the immigrant population is the annual net immigration, which by far outweighs the growth due to elevated (but declining) fertility of immigrants.

Presented in Poster Session 1