Hungary’s population decline slowed in the first six months of the year as the number of births increased by 5.5 percent and the number of deaths decreased also by 5.5 percent compared with the same period last year, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said on Friday.

The figures show that there were 44,250 births in January-June, up 2,291. The number of deaths was 64,302, down 3,733 from last year, KSH said.

The rise in births and the drop in deaths means that the rate of natural population decline was down 23 percent compared with the same period last year.

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A regional breakdown shows that population figures declined in every county and region last year but the pace of decline decreased significantly in the capital, the Northern Great Plain and North Hungary.

KSH noted that the estimated total fertility rate was 1.5, up from 1.41 a year before.

The number of marriages went up to 26,792, about 11.2 percent more than a year earlier, KSH said.

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