France's population rises 280,000 in 2013

There were 66 million people in France on 1 January 2014
There were 66 million people in France on 1 January 2014 Reuters/Benoit Tessier

France's population hit 66 million in 2013, a rise of 280,000, 40,000 of whom were immigrants. France's famous birth rate was down slightly to just under two children per mother.


A total of 66 million people live in France, according to national statistics institute Insee, 63.9 million in mainland France, the other 2.1 million in overseas territories in the Carribean, the Pacific and the Indian Ocean.

Despite immigration becoming an increasingly hot political issue, the vast majority of the growth was due to births - 810,000 babies were born in France in 2013, while 572,000 people died.

The net rise from immigration was 40,000.

Although France's birth rate remains high compared to all other European countries except Ireland, it fell below two per mother - 1.99 compared to 2.03 in 2010 - with the average age of mothers giving birth being 30.1 years old, up six months in 10 years.

Other numbers crunched by Insee include:

  • The French population is 13.1 per cent of the European Union's;
  • Life expectancy rose to 85 for women - up 2.1 years in 10 years;
  • Life expectancy rose to 78.7 for men - up 2.9 years in 10 years;
  • There are 11.8 million people over 65, 18 per cent of the population, up 3.4 points in 20 years;
  • There are 5.6 million people over 75, 9.1 per cent of the population, up three points in 20 years.

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