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With 11.5 million residents, KZN is the country’s second most populated province

KwaZulu-Natal, however, had the largest population of children aged 15 and younger, which stood at 5.4 million Statistics South Africa’s mid-year population estimates show. Pic: Supplied

KwaZulu-Natal, however, had the largest population of children aged 15 and younger, which stood at 5.4 million Statistics South Africa’s mid-year population estimates show. Pic: Supplied

Published Jul 10, 2020

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Durban - KWAZULU-NATAL has the second largest population with 11.5 million people, according to Statistics South Africa’s mid-year population estimates released on Thursday. 

It also found that South Africa’s population has grown to 59.62 million people.

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Gauteng still has the largest population with 15.5 million people, and the Northern Cape has the smallest population with 1.29 million people.

KwaZulu-Natal, however, had the largest population of children aged 15 and younger, which stood at 5.4 million. Between the period of 2016-2021, KZN had the third-largest fertility rate in the country with 2.78 children per woman, the highest being Limpopo with 2.90 and the lowest Gauteng, with 1.90 per woman.

Gauteng had the highest amount of pensioners, 60 years and older, who comprised 21.4% of the population.

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Life expectancy was estimated to be at 62.5 years for males and 68.5 years for females with the infant mortality rate being 23.6 deaths per 1000 live births.

In the report, Statistician-General Risenga Maluleke said: “The impact of Covid-19 on conception, and subsequently, the expected births in 2021 is anticipated to decline given the escalation in economic uncertainty. However, empirical data to this effect will only be reflected in the reported births of 2021.

“For this reason, current assumptions of national and provincial fertility are based on trends seen in published births data currently available.”

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He said the population estimates would be published again next year, but this time, the impact of the coronavirus would have a greater impact on the figures on deaths, births and migration.

The Pietermaritzburg Economic Justice and Dignity Group’s researcher, Julie Smith, said what needed to be observed was to ensure that there was a strategy that would deal with population growth. She said if the population grew then wages would spread further by having to feed more people.

“But the problem is also that there is a high unemployment rate and a poor economy. Our economic situation is abnormal right now.”

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She expected next month’s Quarterly Labour Force Survey to give a more accurate picture of the impact of Covid-19 on jobs.

With the current situation, it was more difficult for people to better themselves as there were no jobs available. Young people in the province needed to be supported, Smith said.

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