This is the highest recorded figure in Singapore's history as the figures were published in the annual Population in Brief report by the National Population and Talent Division, Prime Minister's Office.
Last year in 2022, the total population rose for the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic hit, to around 5.638 million. The publication by the National Population and Talent Division and partner agencies said: “Taking into account the decline in total population in 2020 and 2021 amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the average total population growth rate over the past five years was comparable to the preceding five-year period.”
The citizen and Permanent Resident (PR) populations increased by 1.6 per cent (3.55 million to 3.61 million) and 3.7 per cent (0.52 million to 0.54 million) respectively between June 2022 and June 2023 (see above graph). With the easing of travel restrictions related to COVID-19, more citizens and PRs living overseas returned to Singapore, and this was the largest contributing factor to the increases in the citizen and PR populations.
As at June 2023, the non-resident population stood at 1.77 million, an increase of 13.1 per cent from June 2022. The increase in the non-resident population was mainly due to foreign employment growth in Singapore from June 2022 to June 2023 (see below graph). The increase was seen across all pass types, and the largest increase came from Work Permit Holders in the Construction, Marine Shipyard, and Process sectors, as contractors hired more workers to catch up on projects that were delayed by COVID-19. The remaining increases in foreign employment were spread across sectors as firms backfilled positions vacated by non-residents during the pandemic.
The proportion of our citizen population aged 65 years and above is rising, and at a faster pace compared to the last decade. Large cohorts of “baby boomers” have begun entering the post-65 age range (see below graph).
Currently, 61.0 per cent of citizens are aged 20-64 years. This proportion has decreased from 64.9 per cent in 2013. Conversely, the proportion of citizens aged 65 and above has increased from 11.7 per cent in 2013 to 19.1 per cent in 2023. By 2030, around 1 in 4 citizens (24.1 per cent) will be aged 65 & above (see graph above).
In 2022, there were 24,767 citizen marriages, 5.7 per cent more than the 23,433 citizen marriages in 2021 (see graph below). The number of citizen marriages increased for the second consecutive year since 2020. The increase could have been contributed by couples resuming their marriage plans after disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the annual average number of citizen marriages in the last five years (22,700) remained lower than that in the preceding five years (23,600).
There were 30,429 citizen births in 2022, 4 per cent fewer than the 31,713 citizen births in 2021 (see above graph). The annual average number of births in the last five years (31,800) was also lower than that in the preceding five years (32,700).
These figures and graphs above are extracted from the annual Population in Brief 2023 publication, which provides key updates and trends on Singapore’s population.
"This 2023 population figure exceeded analysts projection in 2022 where they projected Singapore's population to trend around 5.7 million in 2024 and 5.8 million in 2025, according to sophisticated econometric models" said real estate professional Kiwi Lim.
"Moving forward, this may put additional pressure on the housing market as the demand for residential homes may increase due to a faster population growth."
Kiwi Lim also believe that a larger population can also lead to the formation of a critical mass. Critical mass refers to a point at which a specific quantity or size of something is necessary to trigger a particular action, event, or phenomenon.
How does a larger population relate to the concept of critical mass in economics?
- Economic Activity: In the context of economics, a larger population can create a critical mass of consumers. When there are enough consumers in a market, businesses are incentivized to enter that market, leading to increased economic activity, competition, and potentially greater innovation.
- Infrastructure Development: A growing population can prompt the development of critical mass in infrastructure projects. For example, the construction of a new public transportation system may become financially viable when there's a sufficient population to support its use.
- Social Movements: In social and political contexts, a larger population can provide the critical mass needed for social movements or political revolutions. When a significant portion of the population supports a cause, it becomes more likely to effect change.
- Technological Adoption: In the tech industry, a larger user base can create a critical mass for the adoption of new technologies or platforms. For instance, social media platforms become more useful and engaging as more people join and use them.
- Cultural Impact: In cultural terms, a larger population can influence the critical mass of cultural trends or shifts. When a particular idea or trend gains enough popularity within a population, it can lead to cultural change.
- Resource Allocation: In resource management, a larger population may necessitate the allocation of resources to meet basic needs. A critical mass of people needing access to food, water, healthcare, or education can drive policies and initiatives to address these needs.
- Market Demand: In business, a larger population can lead to a critical mass of demand for specific products or services. Companies may invest in production and marketing to cater to this larger customer base.