Cities in SLOVAKIA
Of the population, 80.7% are Slovak (2017). A significant minority (8.5%) are the Hungarians, who live mainly in the south. The relationship between the two population groups was very poor, but has improved with the recognition of Hungarian as a minority language and by allowing bilingual education. Hungarians are represented in parliament by the Hungarian Coalition Party (SMK).
Other minorities include Czechs, Romani (Gypsies), Russians, Ukrainians (especially north-eastern Slovakia around Presov) and Ruthenians.
The Romani also have a hard time in Slovakia and suffer from prejudice and pure discrimination. Add to this high unemployment and it is not surprising that many Romani have fled Slovakia.
Ruthenians are originally Eastern Slavs, which means that their history, culture and language are rooted in the medieval Kiev Rus (Old Russian Empire with Kiev as its capital). Slovaks and Ruthenians have been living on the same territory for about 1000 years.
The Ruthenians traditionally belong to the Byzantine/Greek Catholic Church or to Orthodox Christian churches. They have never had a country of their own and now live scattered across Slovakia, Ukraine and Poland. There are about 1.5 million Ruthenians in Europe, of whom about 120,000 live in Slovakia.
Most Slovak Ruthenians live in Eastern Slovakia, especially in the districts of Star Lubovna, Spisk Nov Ves, Bardejov, Svidnk, Stropkov, Medzilaborce, Humenn and Snina.
The population of Slovakia in 2017 was 5,445,5829. The capital Bratislava (430,000 inhabitants) and Košice (241,000) are the largest cities.
Other major cities are:
The average population density is about 111 inhabitants per km2 and almost 54% of the population lives in the cities. The most densely populated area is around Bratislava, the least populated is Eastern Slovakia (except the industrial city of Košice) and certain mountainous regions.
In the 1980s, the population grew by more than five percent annually. After independence, that growth rate steadily declined and in 2017 the population grew almost nothing (0%). The main reason for this trend is the declining birth rate, from 15.1 in 1990 to 9.7 per 1000 inhabitants in 2017. As a result, there will be an increasing ageing population.
Some more figures (2017)
Population composition by age
0-14 years 15.2%
15-64 years 69.4%
Life expectancy: men 73.7 years ; women 81.1 years (2017)
population growth: 0% (2017)
Birth rate: 9.7 per 1000 inhabitants (2017)
death rate: 9.9 per 1000 inhabitants (2017)
Lacika, J. / Tatras
Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, Inc
Meyer, M. / Tsjechië, Slowakije
Samuhel, S. / Mountain walks in the High Tatra
Wilson, N. / Czech & Slovak Republics
CIA - World Factbook
BBC - Country Profiles
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