In 2012, 674,000 babies were born in Germany. This was an increase of 1.6 percent, or 11,000 more people, than in 2011, according to the Federal Statistics Office.
Yet 870,000 people died in 2012 than in 2011, an increase of two percent. This amounted to around 196,000 fewer people living in Germany overall – a figure roughly equivalent the population of a small town. Deaths have outweighed births in Germany since 1972.
The slight gap closure – due to the birth increase – could have been due to an influx of EU immigrants coming from crisis-hit countries largely in the south of the continent, Der Spiegel news magazine suggested.
There was also an increase in the number of marriages, with 387,000 people saying “I do” in 2012. This was an increase of 2.5 percent on 2011.