The population of Belgium has grown by 73,152 people since last year. This is the largest increase in 40 years, according to figures from the federal ministry for the economy.
Belgium had 10,584,534 residents as of 1 January 2007, 73,152 more than on the same date last year. The population consists of 5,181,408 men and 5,403,126 women. In absolute terms, the greatest increase was in Flanders, where the population grew by 38,840. The population in Wallonia grew by 21,901 and in Brussels by 12,411. In relative terms the increase in Brussels was double that in Flanders and Wallonia.
The provinces that showed the largest increases were Wallonian Brabant (up 1.09%), Luxembourg (up 1.02%) and Flemish Brabant (up 0.80%). The smallest growth was found in West-Vlaanderen (up 0.35%) and Henegouwen (up 0.37%).
A large share of the population increase was due to high immigration figures. The number of foreigners in the country increased by 27,950, to a total of 932,161. The number of births also increased, and the number of deaths decreased. Last year also showed strong population growth with an increase of 65,530 new residents. Around the turn of the century population growth was on average 25,000 annually.