Key findings: P0302 - Mid-year population estimates, 2021

For 2021, Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) estimates the mid-year population at 60,14 million people. Approximately 51,1% (approximately 30,75 million) of the population is female. On 5 March 2020, South Africa recorded its first case of COVID-19. By the 11th of March, the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. South Africa’s first COVID-19 related death occurred on 27th March 2020. As the spread of the disease occurred over time, there was a rise in the number of direct and indirect deaths in the population due to COVID-19. In conjunction, there was a rise in innovation in COVID-19 related treatment protocols, prevention measures and vaccination development over this time. Life expectancy at birth for 2021 is estimated at 59,3 years for males and 64,6 years for females. There is a reduction in international migration, which is indicative of the COVID-19 travel restrictions and subsequent impact on migratory patterns since March 2020.  Gauteng still comprises the largest share of the South African population, with approximately 15,81 million people (26,3%) living in this province. KwaZulu-Natal is the province with the second largest population, with an estimated 11,5 million people (19,1%) living in this province. With a population of approximately 1,30 million people (2,2%), Northern Cape remains the province with the smallest share of the South African population.