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This article is about the demographic features of the population of Nauru, including population density, ethnicity, education level, health of the populace, economic status, religious affiliations and other aspects of the population.

Naurean people

As of July 2002, the population of Nauru was estimated at 12,329. The inhabitants are known as Nauruans.





The tiny equatorial island of Nauru has been inhabited for about 2,000 years. Today, most of the people of Nauru live along a narrow and fertile coastal strip of the island. The total population numbers in excess of 11,000. [1]


Its population is approximately 58 percent indigenous Nauruan and 26 percent other Pacific Islander, with sizable minorities of both Europeans and Chinese, each numbering about 8 percent respectively. The indigenous Nauruans are a mixture of three Pacific ethnic groups: Melanesian, Micronesian and Polynesian. A small overseas population also lives in Nauru, made up mainly of Chinese, Filipinos, Tuvaluans and I-Kiribati. [2]


Nauruans also have their own distinct Pacific language called Nauruan, though most people speak or understand English. [3]


The population is largely Christian as a result of missionary activity in the 19th century. Most Christians tend to belong to Protestant denominations. [4] There are also significant Baha'i and Buddhist minorities.


Education in Nauru is both free and compulsory from age 5 through 16. There are 6 infant schools, 2 primary schools, 1 secondary school, a technical school and a mission school on Nauru. Students who wish to pursue higher education are often granted scholarships to study abroad. [5]

Human Development

The population of Nauru has an average life expectancy ranging from 62 years, depending on the sources used. The infant mortality rate for Nauru was 10.33 deaths for every 1000 live births, the birth rate is about 26.09 births per 1,000, and the overall population growth rate is 1.9 percent.

In terms of health, diabetes, cancer and hypertension all present serious problems in contemporary society, due to a highly Westernized diet. Another health challenge has been the increase in the rate of alcoholism in Nauru. Nevertheless, medical and dental care are provided free for all Nauruans. [6]

CIA World Factbook demographic statistics

The following demographic statistics are from the CIA World Factbook, unless otherwise indicated.

Population structure

  • Age structure
    • 0-14 years: 39.6% (male 2,515; female 2,366)
    • 15-64 years: 58.7% (male 3,578; female 3,656)
    • 65 years and over: 1.7% (male 108; female 106)
  • Sex ratio
    • at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
    • under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
    • 15-64 years: 0.98 male(s)/female
    • 65 years and over: 1.05 male(s)/female
    • total population: 1.01 male(s)/female
  • Ethnic groups
    • Nauruan 58%
    • other Pacific Islander 26%
    • Chinese 8%
    • European 8%
  • Religion: Christian (two-thirds Protestant, one-third Roman Catholic; 78%). Also a sizeable Bahá'í population (9%)[7], Buddhist (11%)
  • Languages:
    • Nauruan (official, a distinct Pacific Island language)
    • English widely understood, spoken, and used for most government and commercial purposes

Population dynamics

See also


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