CENSUS: 45% of SA’s 2.4 million immigrants are Zimbabwean

CENSUS: 45% of SA’s 2.4 million immigrants are Zimbabwean

By Agencies

NEARLY half of the international migrants living in South Africa are from Zimbabwe, latest census data has revealed.

The census showed that there are more than 2.4 million international migrants in the country, which equates to around 3% of the total population. 

Most of the international migrants come from the SADC region. Around 45.5% of international migrants come from Zimbabwe, 18.7% from Mozambique, and 10.2% from Lesotho. 

Meanwhile the census showed that in the last decade, the population in South Africa has increased by around 10 million people, with a total of 62 million people living in the country, according to the 2022 census. 

Statistics South Africa released the fourth democratic census on Tuesday. The last census was published in 2011. 

According to the data, there are 62 027 503 people in South Africa compared to the 2011 census, which recorded 51 770 560 people. This translated to a population growth rate of 1.8%. 

Compared to the first democratic census published in the ’90s, the population increased by more than 20 million people from 40 583 573 recorded in 1996. 

Population composition 

Black Africans remained the dominant population group, accounting for 81.4% of the population, which translates to around 50.4 million. 

The black African population increased by around 9 million compared to the 2011 census, which recorded around 41 million black people. 

The coloured population accounted for 8.2% or around 5 million people, followed by white people at 7.3% or 4.5 million people. 

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According to the data, the white population has steadily declined from 11% of the total population in 1996 to 8.9% in 2011 and then 7.3% in 2022. 

The Indian and Asian population accounts for 2.7% of the total population. 


The census also looked at collating the number of homeless people in South Africa. 

Around 55 719 people were recorded as homeless in 2022. Of these, 44 512 were roofless while 11 207 were in shelters. 

Gauteng recorded the highest number of homeless people at 45.6% followed by the Western Cape at 17.5%. 

As a metropolitan area, the City of Tshwane recorded the highest proportion of homelessness. 

Most people recorded loss of job/income (41.3%) as the reason for their homelessness, followed by alcohol and drug use (25%). 

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