Demography: here are the 23 most populated departments of France


Has your department lost or gained inhabitants between 2014 and 2020? This is what the latest study by INSEE (National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies), published this Thursday, December 29, reveals. On January 1, 2020, 67,162,000 people lived in France, not counting Mayotte, with an annual increase of 0.3% on average, i.e. 209,000 additional inhabitants each year. According to the institute, it is “the equivalent of the municipality of Rennes”.

If the result is on the rise at the national level, this is not the case in all the regions, when we look at them with a magnifying glass. Here are those where the population is stable:

Here are the ones where it drops:

“The population dynamic is, as in the past, driven more by the natural balance than by the apparent migratory balance”, writes INSEE in its report, specifying that it is all the same a “demographic slowdown “. The decrease in the natural balance “is due both to the greater number of deaths (with the arrival at advanced ages of many baby-boom generations) and to the decline in births”, adds INSEE.

At the level of the departments, the population is falling sharply in many territories, in particular Meuse, Nièvre and Haute-Marne, where INSEE has observed both a natural deficit and a migratory deficit. Conversely in some, the population increased by 1% between 2014 and 2020.

What is now the most populated department in France, with more than 2.6 million inhabitants? Discover it in the slideshow below and, surprise, it’s not about Paris…