Brazil’s annual population growth slowed over the past decade to its lowest since records began 150 years ago, the government statistics agency said on Wednesday, as people in one of the world’s most populous countries have fewer children.
Latin America’s largest nation had 203,062,512 inhabitants in August 2022, the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IGBE) said, 6.5% higher than the last census in 2010 but below the 213.3 million projected in 2021.
The United Nations Population Fund estimated that Brazil would be the world’s seventh-most populous country in mid-2023.
Yearly population growth between 2010 and 2022 reached 0.52%, the IGBE said, the lowest since the series started in 1872. Brazil’s population growth has been slowing since the 1960s, which the agency said reflected lower birth rates.
“In 2022, the annual growth rate will be less than half of what it was in 2010 (1.17%),” census technical coordinator Luciano Duarte said in a statement.
Brazil’s southeast continues to be its most populated region, hosting some 41.8% of its entire population, or 84.8 million people. That is where Brazil’s largest cities, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, are located.
The least populated region is the country’s centre-west, known for its huge agricultural output, with 16.3 million people, the IBGE added.
Brazil traditionally releases a new census every ten years, but the one scheduled for 2020 was postponed to 2022 because of the COVID-19 pandemic and a lack of government funding.