Population - The size of the resident population of Belarus amounted to 9,800.1 thousand people as of 01.01.2005, including urban residents — 7,045.5, or 71.5%. Over 24% of the urban population resides in the Belarusian capital.
Belarus is a comparatively densely populated country. Average population density is 47 persons per 1 km2. The territory of Belarus is inhabited rather uniformly, most densely — central regions.
The sex-age structure of the population is as follows: males account for 46.8% and females — 53.2%. As of the early 2005, there were 1,138 females for 1,000 males. In the age group under 15 years of age, boys account for 51.2% and girls — 48.8%. Above 60 years of age, the male-to-female ratio is 1 to 1.8 and above 80 years of age — 1 to 3.5.
17.9% of the population is younger of the able-bodied age, 61.0% of the population are males at the age of 16–59 years and females — 16–54 years (i.e. population of the able-bodied age), and 21.1% of the population is above the able-bodied age. Over the last 30 years, the fraction of children reduced from 28.9% to 16.2% in the population structure, while the share of population above 60 years of age increased to make up 18.7% accounting for 29.6% in rural and 14.3% in urban areas. The natural growth mainly contributes to the increment of population in Belarus. It rather rapidly reduced in the 1970s–80s (from 146.2 in 1960 to 50.0 thousand people in 1989), and it reduced even more significantly in the 1990s. A number of factors affected the drop in the birth rate over the last decades: features of the age structure (the women — children of “children of war” — reached the childbearing age), change in the social orientation and environmental consequences of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster and so forth.
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