Population 1 January
- Registration entry for subjects
- Reliability and security
- Access to information
Population 1 January
0.2 Subject area
0.3 Responsible authority; office, division, person etc.
Demography and census
Tel.: + 528 1033
0.4 Purpose and history
Population figures from International Organisations (United Nations, Eurostat and the European Union) usually refer to the population as it stands at the end of the year.
From 1703 until 1960 the population was estimated from decennial census. From 1840 until 1996 the population on the 31 December has been estimated annually from censuses, birth, mortality and migration data and/or the National Register of Persons as it stands on 1 December. From 1997 the National Register of Persons at the end of the year provides the population figures for 1 January the subsequent year. The register provides information on the development and composition of the population.
0.5 Users and application
Ministries, municipalities, institutions, companies, organisations and individuals.
Censues and the National Register of Persons of Statistics Iceland, where information on deaths, births, migration, marriages, changes in citizenship and adoptions is registered.
0.7 Legal basis for official statistics
Act on official statistics and Statistics Iceland, no. 163/2007.
Act on the National Register of Persons and public registration, no. 54/1962.
The domicile Act, no. 21/1990.
Act on notifying change of address, no. 73/1953.
0.8 Response burden
0.9 EEA and EU obligations
1.1 Description of content
From the National Register of Persons of 31 December information is gathered on the total population with domicile in Iceland on 1 January
The following appears in the published material:
Population by sex and age.
In further tables the population of 1 January is classified by:
- Type of family
- Marital status (legal partnerships as well as consensual union)
- Nationality and country of birth
- Municipalities, urban nuclei
- Postal codes and streets
1.2 Statistical concepts
Domicile: A persons domicile is where they are usually resident. One is considered to be usually resident in the place where one usually spends free time, has ones property and sleeps when not temporarily away owing to leave, work related travel, illness or similar reasons. Persons who have stayed or intend to stay in Iceland for 6 months or longer must register their domicile in Iceland. EEA citizens who have stayed or intend to stay in Iceland for more than 3 months may register their domicile in Iceland.
The concept of domicile differs from international (UN) guidelines in the sense that the UN guideline make the threshold of stay or intention to stay at 12 months. Persons with shorter stays or intentions to stay are considered short term migrants and should not be counted with the usual residents at the place of destination.
It should be noted that the international guidelines also apply to internal migration. The Icelandic law, however, require all persons to notify the authorities of any move of usual residence within 7 days of movement. No requirements of intention to stay are provided in the act.
Urban nucleus: A town, village or other area within a municipality where inhabitants live in houses standing in the vicinity of one another. The urban nucleus either has its own name or is considered one in the area. Urban nuclei with 50 persons or more are accounted for. Also if an urban nucleus previously had 50 persons and more or may reach 50 persons in the foreseeable future.
Locality: A locality is a collection of one or more contiguous urban nuclei. Classification by size of localities is the basis of dividing inhabitants by degree of urbanisation, and distinguishing localities, minor localities and rural areas. In 1960 Statistics Iceland started to classify the population by degree of urbanisation, according to harmonised definitions of size classes of localities used in the Nordic countries, which in turn are based on the United Nations framework. The boundary between urban localities and rural areas was set at localities with 200 inhabitants or more when nothing else was specified, instead of a previous threshold of 300 in accordance with the law on local authorities of 1905, which stipulated that towns with at least 300 inhabitants could become separate municipalities.
Marital status: Marital status is the legal definition. Separated persons and persons not living together are considered married. Legal partnerships
Nationality: Legally competent citizen of the state.
Country of birth: Country where individual is born.
2.1 Reference periods
The National Register of Persons is used as it stands on 31 December of every year.
2.2 Process time
The National Register of Persons is used as it stands at the end of the 31 December; results are processed during February of the following year.
Population statistics are published in the June issue of the Statistical Series of the following year. Further information is stored in the database of the Information Department of Statistics Iceland.
2.4 Frequency of releases
Population statistics from the National Register of Persons of 31 December are published once per year in the June issue of the Statistical Series
3.1 Accuracy and reliability
There are three sources of errors to figures in the National Register of Persons on 31 December: late notifications of change of residence, late death certificates, and late birth reports. In a survey of delayed reports over the past five years it emerged that the greatest uncertainty was caused by late notifications of change of residence, due to which an average of 80 persons are under- or overestimated in the National Register of Persons on 31 December. Late death certificates cause the number of persons to be overestimated by around 10 persons in the National Register of Persons on 31 December, while late birth reports cause the number of persons to be underestimated by one individual about every two years. Error in the total amount in the National Register of Persons is therefore, on average (average for 1996-2000) around 0.03%.
Comparisons of censuses and the National Register of Persons on 31 December give another way of evaluating errors in the register taken for the 31 December. Statistics Icelands last census was carried out on 31 January 1981, when 227,870 persons were counted. On the other hand The National Register of persons for 1 December 1980 was updated to 31 January 1981 and showed 229,208 individuals. About 1,338 more individuals were found in the National Register of Persons than in the census from the same time (around 0.6% error).
It is likely that a large proportion of those going abroad for a shorter or longer period of time, to study or work, choose to stay registered in the National Register of Persons, either to retain rights within the social security system or simply due to apathy. It is therefore to be expected that a greater number of people is registered in the National Register of Persons than are actually residing in the country.
3.2 Sources of errors
Errors in the National Register of Persons are mainly due to delays in the notification of change of residence as well as delayed birth reports and death certificates. In order to keep errors to a minimum the National Register of Persons on 31 December is corrected around 30 days back in time; a month is allowed for notifications of change of residence, birth reports and death certificates to arrive.
3.3 Measures on confidence limits/accuracy
Confidence limits are not calculated.
4.1 Comparison between periods
Copies of the National Register of Persons were first taken for 31 December in 1997. From 1960 until 1996 end of year figures were derived by adding birth reports and death certificates from the whole of December to the population as it stood, according to the National Register of Persons, on 1 December. From 1840 until 1959 end of year figures were derived from censuses.
4.2 Comparison with other statistics
4.3 Coherence between preliminary and final statistics
No preliminary statistics are published for the population on 31 December.
5.1 Forms of dissemination
- Website of Statistics Iceland
- Press releases of Statistics Iceland
- Statistical Yearbook of Iceland
- Statistical Series , the monthly publication of Statistics Iceland
- Population statistics until 1980, in the series Hagskýrslur Íslands.
- Hagskinna . Icelandic historical statistics.
5.2 Basic data; storage and usability
Data stored in digital format by the Population Statistics Department of Statistics Iceland. No access is provided to data relating to individuals, though it is possible to have it especially processed.
5.4 Other information
Further information is available from the Population Statistics Department of Statistics Iceland.
© Hagstofa �slands, �ann 24-1-2011