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Population and Demography

The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg is today home to 576 200 [1] people. It has a healthy demographic rate of growth and large scale immigration, both of which developed rapidly during the 1990s after a period of considerable economic growth.

The foreign population resident in Luxembourg currently numbers over 269.200, corresponding to 46.7% of the total population (compared to 17% in the 1960s). These immigrants are overwhelmingly nationals of EU countries, by far the greater part of whom originally come from Portugal, Italy and the two neighbouring countries, France and Belgium. For some years, there has also been an important increase in the number of immigrants and asylum seekers from the countries of Eastern Europe.

These immigrants include a considerable proportion of young people. Immigrants (especially asylum seekers) have a strong impact on the birth rate, accounting for nearly 50% of births in Luxembourg. The number of births given by foreigners in Luxembourg has been increasing since 1991 from 1.652 to 2.845 in 2010, and to 2949 in 2015. This corresponds to nearly half of the total 6.115 live births given in Luxembourg in 2015.

A more detailed breakdown by nationality shows that the Portuguese community is still the largest group, accounting for more than a third of the foreign population. The Italian population has been slightly decreasing during the last two decades. Altogether 73.900 foreigners come from bordering countries (France, Belgium and Germany).

 

Population structure

Population censuses 1991 2001 2010 2011 2016 [2]
Total population (x1000) 384.4 439.5 502.1 511.8 576.2
Of which : Luxembourgers 271.4 277.2 285.7 290.5 307.0
Foreigners 113.0 162.3 216.4 221.3 269.2
Of which :  Portugal 39.1 58.7 79.8 81.3 93.1
                France 13.0 20.0 29.7 31.0 41.7
                Italy 19.5 19.0 18.2 17.7 20.3
                Belgium 10.1 14.8 16.7 17.0 19.4
                Germany 8.8 10.1 12.0 12.1 12.8
                Britain 3.2 4.3 5.5 5.6 6.1
                Netherlands 3.5 3.7 3.9 3.8 4.0
Other EU countries 6.6 9.2 20.5 21.7 32.1
Other 9.2 22.5 30.1 31.1 39.7
Foreigners in % 29.4 36.9 43.1 43.2 46.7
Source: STATEC

An International Workforce

Luxembourg has accordingly an international and multicultural workforce. In 2015, 162.800 people travel daily to Luxembourg from France (84.400), Belgium (38.900) and Germany (42.700) to work in the various sectors.

Luxembourg Nationality

A child born of a Luxembourg father or mother is by definition in possession of the Luxembourgish nationality. A child born of foreign parents on the territory of the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg does not possess the Luxembourg nationality. To acquire its nationality, this can be done either through adoption or naturalization.            
 Applicants for naturalization must be over 18 years of age and reside in Luxembourg for at least seven years. They will have to pass a Luxembourgish language test if they have not been in the Luxembourgish educational system for at least seven years. They also have to follow lessons of Luxembourgish civic education. Marriage to a Luxembourg born citizen does not exempt from passing the naturalization test. By law of October 23rd, 2008 it is possible to require the double or multiple nationality.

Religion

The greatest preponderation of the Luxembourg population is Roman Catholic, with Protestant, Anglican, Jewish and Muslim minorities. According to a 1979 law, the government forbids collection of data on religious practices, but over 90% is estimated to be baptized Catholic (the Virgin Mary is the Patroness of the city of Luxembourg).
 But in 2008 one out of four persons interviewed by CEPS/INSTEAD declared not to be part of any religion, while about 73% declared to be Christian Catholics.
  The Lutheran and Calvinist Churches are the largest Protestant denominations. Muslims are estimated to number approximately 6.000 persons, including 1.500 refugees from Montenegro; Orthodox (Greek, Serbian, Russian, and Roman) adherents are estimated to number approximately 5.000 persons: and there are approximately 1.000 Jews. Freedom of religion is provided by the Luxembourg Constitution.

[1] Statistics from January 1st, 2016, STATEC Luxembourg

[2] estimation January 1st

Official Statistics Luxembourg - Population and Employment (in french)