Demographics of Algeria

2007 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: African Geography

Demographics of Algeria, Data of FAO, year 2005 ; Number of inhabitants in thousands.
Demographics of Algeria, Data of FAO, year 2005 ; Number of inhabitants in thousands.

Ninety-one percent of the Algerian population lives along the Mediterranean coast on 12% of the country's total land mass. Forty-five percent of the population is urban, and urbanization continues, despite government efforts to discourage migration to the cities. About 1.5 million nomads and semi-settled Bedouin still live in the Saharan area. According to the CIA World Factbook, an estimated 29.9% of the population is under age 15.

Ninety-nine percent of the population is classified as Arab/ Berber; most Algerians are considered to be of Berber descent, but only about 20% speak Berber languages. Europeans account for less than 1%.

Almost all Algerians are Sunni Muslims. The few non-Sunni Muslims are mainly Ibadis from the M'Zab valley. (See also Islam in Algeria.) A mostly foreign Roman Catholic community of about 45,000 exists, as do very small Protestant and Jewish communities.

Algeria's educational system has grown rapidly since 1962; in the last 12 years, attendance has doubled to more than 5 million students. Education is free and compulsory to age 16. Despite government allocation of substantial educational resources, population pressures and a serious shortage of teachers have severely strained the system, as have terrorist attacks against the educational infrastructure during the 1990s. Modest numbers of Algerian students study abroad, primarily in Europe and Canada. In 2000, the government launched a major review of the country's educational system.

Housing and medicine continue to be pressing problems in Algeria. Failing infrastructure and the continued influx of people from rural to urban areas has overtaxed both systems. According to the UNDP, Algeria has one of the world's highest per housing unit occupancy rates for housing, and government officials have publicly stated that the country has an immediate shortfall of 1.5 million housing units.

Demographic data from the CIA World Factbook

Population pyramid for Algeria
Population pyramid for Algeria


32,930,091 (July 2006 est.)

Age structure

0–14 years: 28.1% (male 4,722,076/female 4,539,713)
15–64 years: 67.1% (male 11,133,802/female 10,964,502)
65 years and over: 4.8% (male 735,444/female 834,554) (2006 est.)

Population growth rate

1.22% (2006 est.)

Birth rate

17.14 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Death rate

4.61 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Net migration rate

-0.35 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Sex ratio

At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15–64 years: 1.02 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.88 male(s)/female
Total population: 1.02 male(s)/female (2006 est.).....

Infant mortality rate

Total: 29.87 deaths/1,000 live births
Male: 33.62 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 25.94 deaths/1,000 live births (2006 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

Total population: 73.26 years
Male: 71.68 years
Female: 74.92 years (2006 est.)

Total fertility rate

1.89 children born/woman (2006 est.)


Noun: Algerian(s)
Adjective: Algerian


Adult prevalence rate: 0.1% ; note - no country specific models provided (2001 est.)
People living with HIV/AIDS: 9,100 (2003 est.)
Deaths: less than 500 (2003 est.)

Major infectious diseases

Degree of risk: intermediate
Food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
Vectorborne disease: cutaneous leishmaniasis is a high risk in some locations (2005)

Ethnic groups

Arab- Berber 99%, European less than 1%
Note: Almost all Algerians are Berber in origin, not Arab; the minority who identify themselves as Berber live mostly in the mountainous region of Kabylie east of Algiers; the Berbers are also Muslim but identify with their Berber rather than Arab cultural heritage; Berbers have long agitated, sometimes violently, for autonomy; the government is unlikely to grant autonomy but has offered to begin sponsoring teaching Berber language in schools..


Sunni Muslim (state religion) 99%, Christian and Jewish 1%


Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects ( Kabyle, Chaouia, Tamahaq, Chenoua, Tumzabt..).


Definition: Age 15 and over can read and write

Total population: 70%
Male: 78.8%
Female: 61% ( 2003 est.)
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