Iraq People - 2021


GEOGRAPHICAL NAMES  Spanish Simplified Chinese French German Russian Hindi Arabic Portuguese


39,650,145 (July 2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 36


noun: Iraqi(s)

adjective: Iraqi

Ethnic groups

Arab 75-80%, Kurdish 15-20%, other 5% (includes Turkmen, Yezidi, Shabak, Kaka'i, Bedouin, Romani, Assyrian, Circassian, Sabaean-Mandaean, Persian)

note: data is a 1987 government estimate; no more recent reliable numbers are available


Arabic (official), Kurdish (official), Turkmen (a Turkish dialect), Syriac (Neo-Aramaic), and Armenian are official in areas where native speakers of these languages constitute a majority of the population

printed major-language sample:
كتاب حقائق العالم، أحسن مصدر للمعلومات الأساسية (Arabic)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.


Muslim (official) 95-98% (Shia 64-69%, Sunni 29-34%), Christian 1% (includes Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant, Assyrian Church of the East), other 1-4% (2015 est.)

note: while there has been voluntary relocation of many Christian families to northern Iraq, the overall Christian population has decreased at least 50% and perhaps as high as 90% since the fall of the SADDAM Husayn regime in 2003, according to US Embassy estimates, with many fleeing to Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon

Age structure

0-14 years: 37.02% (male 7,349,868/female 7,041,405)

15-24 years: 19.83% (male 3,918,433/female 3,788,157)

25-54 years: 35.59% (male 6,919,569/female 6,914,856)

55-64 years: 4.23% (male 805,397/female 839,137)

65 years and over: 3.33% (male 576,593/female 719,240) (2020 est.)

Dependency ratios

total dependency ratio: 69.9

youth dependency ratio: 64.1

elderly dependency ratio: 5.9

potential support ratio: 17.1 (2020 est.)

Median age

total: 21.2 years

male: 20.8 years

female: 21.6 years (2020 est.)

country comparison to the world: 185

Population growth rate

2.06% (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 38

Birth rate

25.21 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 46

Death rate

3.92 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 217

Net migration rate

-0.68 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 132

Population distribution

population is concentrated in the north, center, and eastern parts of the country, with many of the larger urban agglomerations found along extensive parts of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers; much of the western and southern areas are either lightly populated or uninhabited


urban population: 71.1% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 2.91% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Major urban areas - population

7.323 million BAGHDAD (capital), 1.683 million Mosul, 1.382 million Basra, 1.031 million Kirkuk, 901,000 Najaf, 861,000 Erbil (2021)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.03 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.8 male(s)/female

total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2020 est.)

Maternal mortality rate

79 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)

country comparison to the world: 80

Infant mortality rate

total: 20.08 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 21.84 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 18.24 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 85

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 72.9 years

male: 71.01 years

female: 74.89 years (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 151

Total fertility rate

3.32 children born/woman (2021 est.)

country comparison to the world: 43

Contraceptive prevalence rate

52.8% (2018)

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 98.8% of population

rural: 95% of population

total: 97.9% of population

unimproved: urban: 1.2% of population

rural: 5% of population

total: 2.1% of population (2017 est.)

Current Health Expenditure

4.1% (2018)

Physicians density

0.71 physicians/1,000 population (2018)

Hospital bed density

1.3 beds/1,000 population (2017)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 96.7% of population

rural: 89.7% of population

total: 95.2% of population

unimproved: urban: 3.3% of population

rural: 10.3% of population

total: 4.8% of population (2017 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate


HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS


HIV/AIDS - deaths


Major infectious diseases

degree of risk: intermediate (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

note: widespread ongoing transmission of a respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is occurring throughout Iraq; as of 19 July 2021, Iraq has reported a total of 1,501,595 cases of COVID-19 or 3,733.22 cumulative cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 population with 44.48 cumulative deaths per 100,000 population; as of 19 July 2021, 1.74% of the population has received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

30.4% (2016)

country comparison to the world: 23

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

3.9% (2018)

country comparison to the world: 86

Education expenditures



definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 50.1%

male: 56.2%

female: 44% (2018)

Unemployment, youth ages 15-24

total: 25.6%

male: 22%

female: 63.3% (2017)

country comparison to the world: 52

NOTE: The information regarding Iraq on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Iraq 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Iraq 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.