Russia's Population Decreased by 760 000 People in 2002

The population of Russia decreased by 760 thousand people in 2002. As a Rosbalt correspondent reports, this was announced on Wednesday, December 25, by Chairman of the Russian State Statistical Committee Vladimir Sokolin.

The death rate is currently higher than the birth rate in Russia and, as Mr Sokolin pointed out, this means that Russia is one of several countries with an 'aging' population. However, Mr Sokolin added that there are several countries in this category with rather high living standards, although admittedly for other reasons: in these countries the average life expectancy is continually rising. In Japan, for example, the average life expectancy for men is 90 years, while in Russia the figure is 57.

On the other hand, Mr Sokolin emphasised that initial results of the recent census show that the population of Russia is 'a little higher than expected.' 145 million people filled in the forms instead of the expected 143 million. In Mr Sokolin's opinion this was due to immigration from the Ukraine and Belarus.

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