Experts attribute the decline to the pandemic, which has killed many people, while migration and low birth rates have also played a role.
Russia’s population shrank by about half a million last year, its first contraction in 15 years, the country’s statistics agency said on Friday.
Russia has a population of 146.2 million, according to the Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper, citing the agency.
Experts attributed the decline primarily to the pandemic.
There were 229,700 more deaths between January and November 2020 than in the same period the previous year, an excess mortality rate of more than 13%, the agency said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has long called for increased efforts to support population growth. Last year he blamed the trend on low income.
Experts say other causes are the migration of younger and well-educated people abroad and the low birth rate.
On Tuesday, statistics for 2020 showed that deaths in Poland had reached a level not seen since World War II and that births were falling sharply, trends attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic and described by some as a demographic crisis.
The data reported by the Dziennik Gazeta Prawna daily on Tuesday came from a state register that includes weekly births and deaths.
Commenting on data released by the state agency Statistics Poland in December for 11 months of 2020, economist Rafal Mundry said the number of deaths was the highest since World War II and the number of births lowest in 15 years.
“We have a huge demographic crisis,” Mundry said on Twitter.
In 2019, around 30,000 people died in Poland each month on average. In November, when COVID-19 cases increased, the country recorded nearly 60,400 deaths.
In the UK, a study published on January 14 suggested it may be the biggest population decline since World War II, citing the pandemic.
Faced with bleak job opportunities, expats have left the UK in large numbers, according to the UK Center of Excellence for Economic Statistics (ESCoE).
About 1.3 million foreign-born people left the UK from July 2019 to September 2020, he said.
Meanwhile, Brexit also appears to have had an impact on motivating people to leave Britain, with some Al Jazeera interviewees citing the UK’s divorce from the European Union as a push factor.
In London, according to ESCoE, no less than 700,000 people left the capital during the 14 months analyzed.