Riga Population 2018

Riga is Latvia’s capital city. In addition to being the capital, it is also the largest city by population, with over one-third of the country’s population living within the city. It is also the most populous across all of the Baltic states, boasting a population of 641,423 per 2017 data. The city has an overall area of 125 square miles, with a population density of 5,100 people per square mile. In addition to having a large population, Riga is also a popular tourist destination, with 2.3 million visitors coming to the city in 2016. The metro area, known as the Riga Planning Region, has a population that exceeds 1 million as of 2017.

Despite having the highest population in the country, it has actually declined from numbers posted in the 1990s. During that time, the population exceeded 900,000 but has dropped in recent years due to low birth rates and emigration. Over 44% of Riga residents are native to Latvia. There is also a high percentage of Russian residents, making up over 37% of the population. Other ethnicities include Ukrainians, Poles and Belarusians. The high rate of Russians living in Riga is expected to decline in the years to come as emigration continues. In fact, the city has been predicted to see its population cut in half by the year 2050 due to continued emigration and low birth rates.

Riga Population in 2018Source: Diego Delso [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Riga Population Data (Urban Area)

Year Population Growth Rate (%) Growth
2030506,000-1.37%-36,000
2025542,000-1.35%-38,000
2020580,000-1.35%-16,000
2018596,000-1.36%-25,000
2015621,000-1.36%-44,000
2010665,000-1.36%-47,000
2005712,000-1.35%-50,000
2000762,000-1.58%-63,000
1995825,000-1.83%-80,000
1990905,0000.56%25,000
1985880,0000.93%40,000
1980840,0001.34%54,000
1975786,0001.54%58,000
1970728,0002.01%69,000
1965659,0002.00%62,000
1960597,0001.99%56,000
1955541,0002.00%51,000
1950490,0000.00%0
Riga Population Growth

Riga's 2018 population is now estimated at 596,000. In 1950, the population of Riga was 490,000. Riga has grown by -25,000 since 2015, which represents a -1.36% annual change. These population estimates and projections come from the latest revision of the UN World Urbanization Prospects. These estimates represent the Urban agglomeration of Riga, which typically includes Riga's population in addition to adjacent suburban areas.

Data Sources
  1. World Urbanization Prospects - United Nations population estimates and projections of major Urban Agglomerations