The total population 1 January 2013 was 321,857 compared with 319,575 in 2012. This constitutes an increase of 0.7%. The population declined in two regions, mostly in the Northwest which lost 0.4% of its population in 2013. Six regions experienced a population increase. The Westfjords gained most proportionally (1.1%) where the population increased by 77 persons.
The number of municipalities 1 January 2013 was 74, decreased by one with the merging of municipalities in the Capital region. Six municipalities have fewer than 100 inhabitants, and 42 have fewer than 1,000 inhabitants.
The dependency ratio was 68.6% 1 January 2013, a slight increase from previous year when it was 68.4%. The dependency ratio is calculated as the ratio of the young and old to the working age population of 20–64 years of age.
The number of nuclear families, i.e. couples with or without children under the age of 18 years or single parents with children under 18 years, was 78.168 on 1 January 2013, compared with 77,621 families in 2012.
The population development in 2012 will be further analysed in the Statistical Series, due to be published 9 April this year.
A new definition of localities and urban nuclei has been introduced, following closely international recommendations, especially that of the Commission Regulation (EC) No 1201/2009 implementing Regulation (EC) No 763/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council on population and housing censuses as regards the technical specifications of the topics and of their breakdowns (OJ L 329, p. 29, 9 15.12.200).
As previously announced, mid-year population figures have been replaced by annual average population figures. Those are calculated simply by averaging the start and end figures of the year.