Immigration pushes Scottish population to record high

31 May 2012 | Posted by Carl Thomas

The Scottish population reached a record high during 2011, largely due to an influx of immigrants.

According to the National Records of Scotland, the number of people living in the country stood at 5,254,800 by June 2011. This is an increase of 32,700 on the previous year and represents the highest annual increase for more than 50 years.

In terms of migration, 27,000 more people came to live in the country in comparison to the number that left. This includes 25,400 people from overseas, rather than those who moved from within the UK.

A high rate of births also helped push up the figure with around 4,800 more births than deaths registered over the period.

George MacKenzie, registrar general for Scotland, commented on the data: "Scotland's population has reached its highest ever. Fewer people came to Scotland from the rest of the UK than in recent years - a net gain of 2,900.

"But the net gain of around 25,400 people from overseas was the highest since current estimates began in 1991-92."

The highest population increase was in Edinburgh, where the population rose by 1.9 per cent. Aberdeen and Midlothian saw an increase of 1.5 per cent, while Perth and Kinross saw a rise of 1.2 per cent.

On the West coast, however, the population of Inverclyde fell by 0.7 per cent, while the Moray population dropped by 0.5 per cent.

Scotland has struggled with a decreasing population over recent years to the immigration figures are likely to be welcomed.