Helsinki’s population continued rapid growth in 2014

The population of Helsinki was 620,715 at the turn of the year 2015, up by 8,051 since a year before, which shows slower growth than in two previous years. The difference between births and deaths grew the population by 1,858, which is markedly higher than in recent years. Helsinki also gained population from areas of Finland outside the Helsinki region and from abroad. Helsinki’s population growth represented 87 percent of the entire Finnish population growth, and the Finnish population growth was more heavily focused in the Helsinki region than in 2013.

The share of 15- to 29-year-olds was pronounced in Helsinki in comparison with the rest of the metropolitan area and the rest of Finland. Especially the shares of residents aged 65 and older and under school age grew in 2014. The number of children has increased owing to lower migration losses than before and an immigration gain from abroad. The aging of the population explains the growth among the age group 65 and older.

The population grew in all major districts except for Östersundom, but mainly in the Central and Southern districts. In January-May 2015, the Helsinki population grew by 3,000, down by 600 from the same period last year.

Migration gain from outside the region grew, migration loss to neighbouring municipalities also grew

Migration losses to other Helsinki Metropolitan Area municipalities, typical of Helsinki, started to decline in 2008 but resumed growth last year, which saw a loss of 866 residents. However, Helsinki gained the highest number of residents from the rest of Finland since 2001, that is, 4,511.

Helsinki’s immigration gain from abroad was at the previous year’s level, totalling 2,783. However, the migration gain was 600 fewer than the average for 2007–2012.

The number of births in 2014 was 6,907, which is slightly more than in the past two years. The number of deaths was 5,049, that is, 75 more than in 2013. The number of births per woman was 1.3, which was 23 percent lower than the average for Finland.

The life expectancy of a newborn Helsinki male was 77.8 years and a newborn female 83.5 years. Life expectancy has continued its steady growth. Life expectancy has been lower in Helsinki than the average for Finland, but the difference has narrowed, being 0.3 years for men and 0.4 years for women last year.

More married couples, fewer church members

The number of marriages was higher in 2014 than a year before, but the percentage of married couples of all families declined somewhat. The percentage of married couples of all couples without dependents grew somewhat and was 41. Of all babies born during the year, 41 percent were born out of wedlock.

The percentage of Helsinki residents registered as members of some religious denomination continued to decline and was 61 percent at the turn of the year. Especially the number of registered Evangelical Lutherans declined. Less than half of 20- to 39-year-old men were registered members of some religious denomination.

The number of foreign-born residents on the rise

The percentage of Helsinki residents speaking some other language than Finnish, Swedish or Sami as their first language rose to 13.5 percent. The largest language groups were Russian (16,592), Estonian (11,665) and Somali (7,961) speakers, who represented 43 percent of all foreign-born residents. The number of Russian speakers grew the most, by 568, but the number of Estonian speakers grew nearly as much. Foreign nationals represented 8.9 percent of all Helsinki residents.

The Helsinki region comprises the municipalities of Espoo, Helsinki, Hyvinkää, Järvenpää, Kauniainen, Kerava, Kirkkonummi, Mäntsälä, Nurmijärvi, Pornainen, Sipoo, Tuusula, Vantaa and Vihti.