Population: policy context

The population of Scotland has increased each year since 2001 and it is now at its highest level ever.  For the latest year population growth for Scotland has been higher than that of the EU 15 countries.  It was outlined in the Government Economic Strategy (GES) that population growth is a key contributor to, and consequence of, a more vibrant and a more dynamic economy.

The Scottish Government has set a target to match average European (EU15) population growth over the period 2007 to 2017, supported by increased healthy life expectancy in Scotland over this period. Details of how Scotland performs against this target can be found on the Scotland Performs website.