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MOSCOW, December 16 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia’s population stands at 142,857,000 people, aged 39 in an average, according to the Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily, which published on Friday an official report of the 2010 population census.
Thus, Russia has dropped one step down in the world population ratings. According to the previous census of 2002, it occupied the seventh position, now it is eighth, after China, India, the United States, Indonesia, Brazil, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
Population decrease rates in Russia are growing. Thus, in the period of 13 years from the last Soviet-era census of 1989 and the first Russian census of 2002, the number of population decreased by 1.8 million. The figure grew to 2.3 million in the past eight years. The biggest drop is registered among rural population.
Not only people vanish, but entire settlements do, the Rossiiskaya Gazeta writes. Since 2002, as many as 8,500 settlements have ceased to exist.
De facto some of villages are all the same existent, having been incorporated into nearby towns and cities. But some have been actually deserted after their dwellers moved to other populated localities. Moreover, according to the census, there are 19,400 villages that exist de jure but have no inhabitants. The figure is 48 percent bigger than in the previous census.
The proportion of males and females has changed but women still prevail. Now, the number of women is bigger than the number of men by 10.7 million. The population aging tendency is manifest. The mean age of Russia’s subjects is 39, while in the 2002 census it was 37.7.
Family-related tendencies are also changing. Thus, the number of married couples in 2010 was 33 million (34 million in 2002), of which 13 percent are not officially registered (9.7 percent in 2002). The number of divorces, both registered and not, is also on the rise. However, the number of young-age marriages has gone down. In 2002, a total of 3,700 young people aged under 16 said they were married. In 2010, the figure halved.
As for ethnic identity, a total of 5.6 million refused to answer nationality questions (some 1.5 million in 2002). As many as 80.90 percent identified themselves as ethnic Russians (80.64 percent – in 2002). The number of ethnic Tatars remained practically the same – 3.87 percent, while the number of Ukrainian has dropped for 2.05 percent in 2002 to 1.41 percent in 2010. The census showed a growth in the number of ethnic Chechens, Avars, and Armenians.