Last Census - 1997
Also See: Major Cities in Iraq
Iraq, or the Republic of Iraq, lies in western Asia encircling the Mesopotamian plain, the northwestern part of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern branch of the Syrian desert. Syria lies on the northwest border of Iraq, Turkey is to the north, Iran is east, and Jordan is to the west. It has a narrow coastline of about 58km at the North Persian Gulf.
The Republic of Iraq has an area of 437,072 sq km and is mainly divided into 3 sections: a desert area in the west, a mountainous area in the north, and a large fertile plain in the middle of its southern area that is fed with water by the Euphrates and Tigris Rivers. The majority of the 34 million people in Iraq live in urban areas. Its capital city is Baghdad.
Iraq Population 2013
The population of Iraq has undergone a steady increase and has reached 2.9% this year. The country’s population increased by 1 million over the past year and currently totals 34,270,831. Of this number 17,198,754 (or 50.2% of the total population) are men, while 17,072,080 (making up 49.8% of the population) are females. Every day, around 2600 babies are born. The high birth rate explains why the population in Iraq is mostly young people; more than 50% are younger than 20 years of age. Moreover, the death rate is fairly small compared to the birth rate; almost 430 people die each day, which is a major factor in Iraq’s population boost over the years. The population grew by 425,087 this year with the tremendously fast rate of 2.9% per year.
Population through the Years
Back in 1997, the population of Iraq was approximately 19 million. That number has increased ever since, and in 2003 it was estimated to be around 25,175,000. Thus, it ranked at number 42 in terms of population out of the 193 total countries in the world. In the same year, around 3% of the population was above 65 years of age, while about 47% was under 15 years of age. For every hundred females, there were 103 males in the country. The annual growth rate for the years 2000-2005 remained approximately 2.68%. Thus, at this rate, the probable population size for the year 2015 is estimated to be 34,226,000. The population density was approximately 54 per sq km in 2002. In 2001 almost 77% of the population lived in urban areas. This meant that from the year 2000 to 2005 the urban population growth rate was approximately 3.3%. The population growth rate increased over the years, reaching a maximum of 2.9%, which means the population is about 34 million in 2013.
The average life expectancy of Iraq’s population is 70.85 years on the whole, out of which males live an average of 69.41 years, while women have a life expectancy of 72.35 years. This figure is fairly good, but not excellent when compared to other countries that reach 82 years and above.
Around three quarters of Iraq’s total population of 34.5 million consists of Iraq’s dominant ethnic groups, the Iraqi or Mesopotamian Arabs. Available figures indicate that Iraqi Arabs make up 75% of the population. The second spot is taken by the Kurds with 17% of the total, while Turkmen take 3%, Assyrians 2%, Persians 2% and others 1%. Arabic, the official language of Iraq, is spoken and understood by almost the entire population. Other languages spoken include Kurdish, Turkmen, Persian and Aramaic.
Islam is the major religion of the country and is followed by 97% of the population, while the remaining 3% is made up of Christianity, Mandaeism and others. About 37.6% of the population is 0-14 years of age, while 59.3% is in the 15-64 age group. Only 3% of the population is 65 years of age or older. The total fertility rate is about 3.58 children born per woman, while the total infant mortality rate is 40.25 deaths per 1000 live births. The birth rate is 28.19 births per 1000 population. Compared to this, the death rate is much smaller, at 4.73 deaths per 1000 population. And surprisingly, the net migration rate is 0 per 1000 population.
Iraq’s Population Future
Provided the very high population growth rate prevails, Iraq’s population is most likely to bloom in the coming years and reach a figure of around 34,226,000 by 2015. However, taking Iraq’s situation into consideration, the growth rate might not be the only factor that should be analyzed. According to surveys, the Gulf war in Iraq has adversely affected its population, so much so that every month 30 to 35 people die of cancer, compared to only 2 to 3 patients a month before the war. Studies indicate that 40-48% of the population in this area will get cancer in the coming 5 years. That’s about half the population. If so, Iraq’s population might decrease at a steady rate or at least fall seriously ill.