Germany Population 2018


Germany is a western-central European country bordered by Poland, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Austria, France, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Germany is the most populous country in the European Union with an estimated 2018 population of 82.29 million, which ranks 17th in the world.

Despite a drop in the country's growth rate, its 2018 population is now estimated at 82.29 million, which makes Germany the 17th most populous country in the world. It's also the largest country in the European Union. Germany has a population density of about 227/square kilometer (583/square mile), which ranks 58th in the world.

East versus West

When East Germany and West Germany were reunited in 1990, the population of East Germany was around 16.1 million people.

Although living standards have improved dramatically in the East over the past 20 years, it still lags behind in economic development, and as a result, many people head west in search of better job opportunties.

Pollution is also a massive legacy of the East German era, where industrial output was prioritized more highly than the environment, and many seek to move simply for a better quality of life.

The New York Times reports that around 1.7 million people have left East Germany since 1990 -- that's a decrease in population of just over 10%.

Immigration into Germany

Of all the 27 European Union states, Germany has the highest percentage of immigrants in its population. Over 10 million people living in Germany today were born outside of Germany -- that's about 12% of the German population. Most immigrants come from other European countries, particularly from Turkey, Russia, Poland and Italy. Germany is the second most popular destination for immigrants in the world after the United States.

The German Government has been keen to encourage immigration over the past fifty years -- partly to address longer term demographic problems in Germany, such as its low birth rate, and partly to address shorter term labor shortages.

Germany Demographics

There are four groups considered "national minorities," which means their ancestors lived in their regions for many centuries. These groups are the Sorbs, Danes, Frisians, and the Roma and Sinti. There are about 50,000 Danes in the northernmost region of Germany. The Sorbs, who are a Slavic people, live in the Lustia region. There are large populations of Frisians in Lower Saxony and the western coast of Schleswig-Holstein.

The majority of Germans are Christian, either Roman Catholic (29.9%) or Protestant (29.8%), although 1.3% of the population are also Orthodox Christians. Islam is the second largest religion in Germany, with an estimated 6.1% of the population according to a 2017 Pew Research Survey. Germany has the second largest Muslim population in Europe, at nearly 5 million, and is expected to grow significantly in the coming decades.

The largest single group, however, is non-believers, who make up 34% of the population. The number of atheists and agnostics is far higher in Eastern Germany than in Western Germany, largely because of the Communist East German state's policy of discouraging religous belief.

Largest Cities in Germany

Germany is divided into 16 states, referred to collectively as Länder, and each state has its own constitution and remains fairly autonomous. Each state also has its own capital. Despite its large population, Germany has relatively few large cities, and only four have a population over 1 million: Berlin, Hamburg, Munich and Cologne.

Still, these cities are much larger when the metropolitan area is taken into account. Hamburg, for example, has a city population of 1.8 million as of 2012, but its metropolitan area is home to more than 5 million. Düsseldorf, the 7th largest city in Germany, has a population of close to 600,000, but its metropolitan area is home to over 11.3 million.

Here's a full list of the ten largest cities in Germany.

1Berlin 3,439,100
2Hamburg 1,769,117
3Munich 1,330,440
4Cologne 998,105
5Frankfurt am Main 671,927
6Stuttgart 600,068
7Düsseldorf 586,217
8Dortmund 581,308
9Essen 576,259
10Bremen 547,685

Germany is home to a large number of smaller cities and towns, however, and in total there are currently 82 cities with a population of more than 100,000 people.

German Census

Censuses have only been intermittently conducted in Germany, and the last one took place in 1987. Instead, the German Government relies on extrapolations from sample data collected from a small percentage (around 1%) of the population. Still, Germany did participate in the EU-wide census in 2011, which gave much-needed insight into the country's population.

Germany Population Growth

The country is now spending about $265 million every year on family subsidies in an attempt to reverse a declining population, with little success. Germany has many issues to overcome, including attitudes in the country where working women with children are dubbed "raven mothers" with an implication of neglectfulness and immigrants are not always welcomed with open arms.

Some experts worry that the country has waited too long to try to address its population problem, and raising fertility rates has proven difficult. Giving money to families and tax breaks for stay-at-home mothers and married couples has done little, and demographers believe expanding after-school and day care programs would be a better investment for the country.

The country will also need to start bringing in more immigrants to fill hundreds of thousands of vacant skilled jobs.

Germany is a representation of the declining fertility rates Europe has seen over the past few decades, and Germany found that it had lost 1.5 million people in its most recent census. This news was a bit of a surprise to the country, which had not conducted a single census since its reunification, even after the Berlin Wall fell in 1989. It seems Germany missed this population loss because its people value privacy, and the last census in 1987 was very strongly opposed, and the one in 2011 was only done because it was required by the European Union.

Most of the 1.5 million who disappeared were migrants, who apparently did not deregister when they left the country, and thus lived on in records. Germany was found to have 1.1 million fewer foreigners than it thought, and 428,000 fewer Germans.

Components of Population Change

One birth every 43 seconds
One death every 34 seconds
One net migrant every 1 minutes
Net gain of one person every 3 minutes

Germany Population in 2018Source: Christian Wolf, [CC BY-SA 3.0 de (], from Wikimedia Commons

Germany Population Pyramid 2018

0k200k400k600k800kGermany Male Population0k200k400k600k800kGermany Female Population10095908580757065605550454035302520151050

Germany Median Age







Germany Population by Age

There are 69,031,718 adults in Germany.

Census Years

Year Date
20211 January 2021
20119 May 2011
199530 September 1995
198725 May 1987

Population Data via United Nations WPP (2015 Revision, Medium Variant)

Germany Population Growth

Germany is currenty fighting a major population drop, and many towns that were thriving just a few decades ago are now filled with vacant homes that may never be sold. Germany's death rate has been higher than its birth rate since the 1970s.

It's estimated that the country will shrink by 2060 to just 71 million. With a birth rate that's one of the lowest in the world, the population of Germany could well drop to around 65-70 million over the next 50 years.

About Germany

Official NameFederal Republic of Germany
Languages SpokenGerman
Is LandlockedNo
Currencies UsedEuro

Germany Population Density

Germany Top 20 Cities by Population

Name Population
Frankfurt am Main650,000

Germany Population Clock

The population of Germany (as of 6/18/2018)?82,287,985
Last UN Estimate (July 1, 2018)82,293,457
Births Per Day1,994
Deaths Per Day2,551
Net Migrations Per Day 1,013
Net Change Per Day 456
Population Change Since January 1st77,064

Germany Population Indicators

Crude Birth Rate 8.865 births/thousand
Crude Death Rate 11.343 deaths/thousand
Crude Net Migration Rate 4.505 people/thousand
Life Expectancy (Both Sexes) 81.27 years
Male Life Expectancy 78.96 years
Female Life Expectancy 83.57 years
Total Fertility Rate 1.47 children/woman
Net Reproduction Rate 0.71 surviving daughters/woman
Sex Ratio At Birth 1.058 males per female
Infant Mortality Rate 2.084 deaths/1,000 live births
Under Five Mortality 2.562 deaths/thousand
Mean Age at Childbearing 31.323 years
Rate of Natural Increase -2.478

Germany Population by Year (Historical)

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Population Rank Growth Rate

Germany Population by Year (Projections)

Year Population % Male % Female Density (km²) Population Rank Growth Rate
Data Sources
  1. Muslim Population in Europe
  2. Federal Statistical Office Germany
  3. Federal Statistical Office Germany
  4. World Population Prospects (2017 Revision) - United Nations population estimates and projections.

    Total population: Estimated to be consistent with official population estimates through 2015, and with estimates of the subsequent trends in fertility, mortality and international migration.

  5. GeoNames Gazetteer