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news 05 Nov 13

Early Results Confirm Bosnia's Population Fall

Preliminary results of the October census by the Statistics Agency said Bosnia was now home to only 3.79 million people, a substantial drop on the 1991 figure.

Elvira M. Jukic
BIRN
Sarajevo

Presenting the preliminary results of the census, on November 5, Bosnia's Statistics Agency said it had counted 3,791,622 persons in the country.

Of that figure, 2,371,603 were counted in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and 1,326,991 in Bosnia's other entity, the Republika Srpska. It counted another 93,028 in Brcko District.

There are 1,163,387 households in the country, 721,199 of which are in the Federation entity and 414,847 in Republika Srpska. There are another 27,341 in Brcko District. The average household in the Bosnia and Herzegovina contains 3.26 people.

Bosnian Communications Minister Damir Hadzic recalled that the process of the head count was far from over.

“The process of publishing data has only started,” he said, “which aims to avoid the kind of manipulations that have occurred, especially in the last few days.”

The minister appeared to be referring to speculation about which of Bosnia's three main communities had grown or declined, since the 1991 census, in relative terms.

The Statistics Agency said it will be publishing different data whenever it has processed the assembled information.

So far, data suggest the largest canton in population terms in the Federation is Tuzla Canton, with 477,278 citizens. The smallest is Bosnian-Podrinje Canton, which is home to 25,336 persons.

The largest municipality is Banja Luka with 199,191 enumerated persons while the smallest municipality in numbers is Istocni Drvar, where only 109 persons were enumerated.

Bosnia has not had a census for the past 22 years, which included the 1992-95 war when hundreds of thousands were either killed, reported missing, internally displaced or fled the country.

The last census, in 1991, counted 4.4 million citizens people, so the latest data confirm reports that the population has declined significantly since then.

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