Population Projections Unit
Telephone: +44 (0) 1329 444652
Frequency of release: Biennially
Geographical coverage: UK
Geographical breakdown: Country
National population projections are available by age and sex for the UK and its constituent countries. They are based on the annual mid-year population estimates for 2010 and a set of underlying assumptions of future levels of fertility, mortality and net migration.
The projections are not forecasts and do not attempt to predict the impact that future government policies, changing economic circumstances or other factors might have on demographic behaviour. They provide an indication of the impact that changes in demographic patterns might have on the size and age structure of the population in the future.
Projections become increasingly uncertain the further they are carried forward and long-term projections should be used with caution. To help understand the uncertainty, a number of variant projections are produced based on alternative demographic scenarios. The 2010-based principal projection along with nine variant projections, were published by ONS on 26 October 2011. This release includes a further 11 variant projections.
You can easily access the detailed reference tables from this release (and the October release) by using the NPP interactive table download tool.
National population projections are used as a common framework for national planning and policy making in a number of fields such as fiscal sustainability, health, education and state pensions policy. They also provide the base for other products such as subnational population projections and household projections, which are widely used for resource allocation and planning. Further information on the fitness for purpose of the population projections can be found in the summary quality report for national population projections.
Other useful information
National Population Projections, 2010-based projections, Released 26 October 2011 – principal and nine variant projections
Interactive population pyramids illustrating the results of the projections
The projections are produced in partnership with the National Records of Scotland (NRS), the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA) and the Statistical Directorate of the Welsh Government.
These National Statistics are produced to high professional standards and released according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority.