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National population projections



Next update

Not yet determined

Key figures

approx. 6.1

million inhabitants expected in Norway in 2060 (main alternative)

Infografikk. Population projections. 2020-2060

See selected tables from this statistics

Table 1 
Total population January 1. Registered 2020 and projected in three alternatives

Total population January 1. Registered 2020 and projected in three alternatives
 Registered 20201Projected alternative2
 Main alternative (MMM)Low alternative (LLL)High alternative (HHH)
1Total population registered per January 1 2020.
2Refers to high and low national growth alternatives.
Total population5 367 580   
2025 5 500 0005 430 0005 570 000
2040 5 860 0005 470 0006 230 000
2060 6 070 0005 160 0007 080 000
2100 6 250 0004 020 0009 290 000

Table 2 

 Registered 2019Projected alternative1
 Main alternative (MMM)Low alternative (LMM)High alternative (HMM)
1Refers to high and low fertility alternatives.
Total fertility rate1.5   
Live births54 495   
2025 55 00048 00061 600
2040 60 40046 20067 500
2060 56 60038 10068 200
2100 57 40032 20074 400

Table 3 
Life expectancy

Life expectancy
 Registered 2019Projected alternative1
 Main alternative (MMM)Low alternative (MLM)High alternative (MHM)
1Refers to high and low life expectancy alternatives.
Life expectancy at birth men81.2   
2025 82.681.783.5
2040 85.683.787.3
2060 88.986.091.3
2100 93.489.796.6
Life expectancy at birth women84.7   
2025 85.784.986.4
2040 88.186.489.7
2060 90.988.493.2
2100 94.991.498.0
Deaths40 684   
2025 42 10044 90039 400
2040 52 80057 30048 800
2060 61 60065 30058 300
2100 65 20066 30064 700

Table 4 
Immigration and emigration

Immigration and emigration
 Registered 20191Projected alternative2
 Main alternative (MMM)Low alternative (MML)High alternative (MMH)
1The number of immigrations and emigrations is lower than in the official statistics, as only one migration per calendar year per person is used in the projections.
2Refers to high and low immigration alternatives.
Immigration50 868   
2025 43 50036 90051 200
2040 40 10032 20055 400
2060 37 20025 90064 600
2100 36 90018 30083 300
Emigration25 547   
2025 29 80028 20031 800
2040 29 00026 20034 100
2060 26 70021 80038 400
2100 24 80015 20049 900
Net migration25 321   
2025 13 7008 70019 300
2040 11 0006 00021 300
2060 10 5004 10026 300
2100 12 1003 10033 400

About the statistics

National population projections are calculations of how the population in Norway will potentially develop over time, given different assumptions about fertility, mortality, immigration and emigration. Read about results, methods and assumptions in the report Norway's 2020 population projections.


Definitions of the main concepts and variables

population projection is an estimate of the future size and composition of a population, given certain assumptions of future fertility, life expectancy, immigration and emigration. The term projection is used for any estimate of the future population, including less likely ones. A prognosis or forecast is an estimate of the most probable future population size and composition.

Statistics Norway publishes several projections, but the MMM alternative, which assumes the medium level for each component, is what we assume to be most plausible.

The various alternatives and terms used in the population projections are described in the projections report (see link under 'Relevant documentation').

Standard classifications

Not relevant.

Administrative information

Name and topic

Name: National population projections
Topic: Population

Responsible division

Research department, Unit for Social and Demographic Research

Regional level

Not relevant.

Frequency and timeliness

The national population projections are published biennially.

International reporting

Statistics Norway reports projections to Eurostat and the United Nations, among others.


The population projections utilize aggregated individual-level data on population size, births, deaths and migration from Statistics Norway’s population statistics. The results from the projections are stored in the StatBank at Statistics Norway and as separate files. Aggregated data may be downloaded electronically from the StatBank.


Background and purpose

The population projections aim at informing planning and public debate on population issues.

Statistics Norway has produced population projections regularly since the 1950s. Previous population projections can be found here, and in the StatBank.

Users and applications

The most important users of Statistics Norway's population projections are public and private planning bodies at the municipal, county and central government levels, as well as researchers, politicians, journalists and the general public. The projections are also used internally at Statistics Norway, for example as input in macroeconomic models.

Equal treatment of users

Not relevant.

Coherence with other statistics

The population projections are published in accordance with international standards. The Norwegian figures are more detailed (immigration category, country group and period of residence) than what is commonly published in most other countries.

Legal authority

There are no specific rules regulating the population projections, but the production process of the projections is based in the Norwegian Statistics Act of 2019.

EEA reference

Although there is no separate EU regulation in this field, a collaboration exists between Norway and Eurostat. Eurostat produces population projections for the EU and Norway on a regular basis. These projections differ from those produced by Statistics Norway.



To project the population, assumptions are needed on future fertility, mortality and international migration. After the assumptions are made, the Norwegian population is projected using the cohort component model BEFINN.

The methods used are further described in the projections report (see link under 'Relevant documentation').

Data sources and sampling

The population projections utilize aggregated individual-level data on population size, births, deaths and migration from Statistics Norway’s population statistics. We use data categorized by age, sex, immigrant background and country group of origin for 1 January each year, in addition to figures on births, deaths, immigration and emigration by age and sex.

No samples are used. The projections utilize the whole population in estimations.

The methods used in the population projections are described in detail in the projections report (see link under 'Relevant documentation').

Collection of data, editing and estimations

No data are collected specifically for the purpose of making population projections.

Seasonal adjustment

Not relevant.


Not relevant.

Comparability over time and space

At a national level, previous versions of the population projections are comparable. Though country groups are not entirely comparable over time, since the definition and the number of groups have varied.

In comparing results from the population projections to the general population statistics at Statistics Norway, two main differences stand out:

  1. The projection models project the population from 1 January one year to 1 January the year after. This means that individuals who move between Norway and other countries several times during one year only contribute one move. Consequently, somewhat fewer migrations are used in the population projections compared to the numbers that are published in the general population statistics.
  2. The age definitions are not the same in the projections and the general population statistics. While the general population statistics use age at time of event (e.g. birth, death or migration), the projections use age at the end of the year. This means that the age-specific rates and probabilities used in the projections – as well as the life expectancy figures – may differ slightly from what is published in the population statistics.

Accuracy and reliability

Sources of error and uncertainty

There is marked uncertainty about whether the assumptions used in making the population projections will accurately reflect future demographic trends. Over the past decade, future immigration has proven to be the most difficult component to project. This is also likely to be the case in the years ahead. Fertility and mortality rates can also be very different to what is projected.

Models are simplifications of reality, and as such may only capture a few key mechanisms. There are a multitude of other conditions that will affect population development which are not considered.

Errors in the population statistics system are usually modest in Norway and play a minor role in the projections.

In general, uncertainty increases with time. For more information, see links under ‘Relevant documentation’.


Not relevant.

Analyses, articles and publications

A historic shift: More elderly than children and teenagers

A historic shift: More elderly than children and teenagers

Published 3 June 2020

Strong ageing, lower population growth, as well as a larger and older immigrant population. According to the 2020 national population projections, these are some of the important changes that will occur this century. In the short term, the Corona pandemic is not expected to increase mortality rates, but fertility and immigration are expected to be temporarily lowered.

Read this article

Norway’s 2020 population projections

Published 3 June 2020

The 2020 national population projections show lower population growth and stronger ageing than in the previous projection produced in 2018. Nevertheless, the main alternative suggests that Norway will experience population growth throughout this century, from around 5.4 million today to 6.1 million in 2060, and around 6.3 million in 2100.

Read this publication
Ways to project fertility in Europe

Ways to project fertility in Europe

Published 13 May 2020

National statistical offices responsible for population projections should regularly evaluate their work. Norway is currently considering changing the way fertility is projected.

Read this publication

The accuracy of Statistics Norway’s national population projections

Published 26 March 2021

Statistics Norway projects the population by age, sex and immigrant background at the national level. This paper examines the accuracy of the Norwegian population projections produced between 1996 and 2018.

Read this publication