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German Population Shrinks

The total population of Germany fell for the second year in a row in 2004 in spite of immigration, Germany's Federal Statistics Office has said. In 2004, there were 113,000 fewer births than deaths in Germany, the office reported. At the same time, 83,000 people immigrated to the country, making up part of the difference and resulting in a net decrease of 31,000 people. That makes the total population figure about 82.5 million. Since 1991, Germany has experienced fewer births than deaths. The country's average birthrate is one of the lowest in the world, at 1.4 children. A country needs to maintain a rate of 2.1 to maintain its population.

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