Serbia has fewer citizens, census results show

BELGRADE -- According to unofficial data of the recent census, Serbia has five percent less citizens, considerably fewer households and people living abroad.

A significant growth was recorded in the number of apartments.

Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia Director Dragan Vukmirović told a press conference in the Serbian government that 7.120,666 citizens were registered in the census, which was 377,335 less compared to the previous census in 2002.

Vukmirović said that such result was expected.

According to him, the main reasons for a drop in the number of citizens are negative birth rate, the fact that ethnic Albanians in three municipalities in the southern Serbia - Preševo, Bujanovac and Medveđa boycotted the census, and migrations.

He explained that the greatest demographic decrease was recorded in eastern Serbia, while growth in the number of citizens was only recorded in the Belgrade region.

As for other data, Vukmirović said that the number of citizens living abroad totaled 294,045, while in 2002 the figure was 420,000.

He said that the number of households was 2.497,187, which was considerably less than in 2002 when Serbia had 2.521,190 households.

The number of apartments increased to 3.243,587, while in 2002 it equaled 2.972,437.

An increase in number of apartments was recorded in 122 out of the total of 168 municipalities in Serbia.

The detailed data of the census will be released on several occasions by mid-2012 when data on ethnicity, religion and mother tongue will be published.