In the first nine months of this year, 100,000 people left the Netherlands to live elsewhere, according to new figures from the national statistics office CBS. Almost half of them were born in the Netherlands.
By the end of the year, 130,000 people will have emigrated – a record level – the CBS said.
Immigration was also up to around 76,000, the figures showed. Most of the immigrants have come from Poland, Germany and the US, but an increasing number of Dutch nationals are also returning home.
It is the third year in a row that more people have left the Netherlands than moved here. In fact, over three years, the Dutch population will have shrunk by 75,000 due to migration – the equivalent of a small town like Schiedam – the CBS said.
The CBS expects the population of the Netherlands to grow by just 20,000 this year – the lowest figure since records began in 1900. At the beginning of this century, the population was growing at around 270,000 a year. The figures also revealed that the birth rate has hit a 20-year low.
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