Population Statistics. Families, 1 January 2003
Almost 100 000 cohabitant couples with children

Cohabitant couples with children is the type of family that have increased most, from 60 900 to 99 800 couples in 20 years. This is an increase of 64 per cent. As usual, there were more cohabitant couples compared to married in the north of Norway.

Akershus (near Oslo) was the county with the highest number of cohabitant couples with children on January 1st, 2003, with 10 400 couples. But the percentage of cohabitant couples compared to other families with children was still under the average in Norway. In the counties from Sør-Trøndelag and north it was four of ten families cohabitant couples with children, while the average of the country was two of ten, and one of ten in Vest-Agder, Aust-Agder and Rogaland (Southwest of Norway).

Families, by type of family, January 1st. 1989-2003

Percentage of cohabitant couples with children of total number of couples with children.  County. Per cent. January 1st, 2003

More married couples without children

The amount of married couples without children continues to increase, while the number of married couples with children continues to decrease. On January 1s t , 1989 there were 571 400 married couples with children in Norway, on January 1s t , 2003 there were 480 200. In the same period of time the amount of childless married couples had increased by 37 700, to 351 700.

Two children for married couples

Married couples have most often two children, 42 per cent of them. And 33 per cent of them have only one child.

For cohabitant couples there were almost as many couples with two as with one child, 43 and 41 per cent respectively.

There are more married than cohabitant couples with three and more than three children.

One reason may be that many cohabitant couples marry after a while and qualify as other type of family. And cohabitation is quite a new phenomenon, so it will take some time for these couples to get as many children as married couples.

Families, by type of family. January 1st. 1989-2003

Increasing number of partners

The amount of partners continues growing since the law for partners was introduced in august 1993.

On January1st, 2003 there were 1 036 registered partners with and without children in Norway. 73 of the partners had children. Partners are still more common in Oslo, both with and without children.

Family statistics

Since 1999 we publish a reduced version of family statistics. We give only figures of married couples with/without children and cohabitant couples with at least one child. Almost 1.6 million people qualify as "Other type of family". The reason for this reduction in family statistics is giving a better quality.

Children in family statistics are children of any age registered living at home.

Other sources

Find more information about families, households and children in Norway in our website: http://www.ssb.no/english/subjects/02/01/20/

For more information, please contact: christina.lyle@ssb.no, telephone +47 62 88 52 20 and oppdragbefolkning@ssb.no, telephone +47 62 88 54 00.


Published 22 May 2003 © Statistics Norway