In 1879, there were 1.15 million people in Bosnia.
In 1948, the population was 2.56 million and by 1991 it was 4.37 million, although that number included workers abroad and the real figure could have been as low as four million. An estimated 100,000 died during the 1992-95 war.
Experts believe that 3.3 million is a fair estimate of the current population — but no one knows for sure. Bosnia’s fertility rate is 1.26 children per woman. It has one of the lowest birth rates in the world.
The adapted figure for the 2013 census gave the population of Bosnia as 3.53 million, of whom 2.21 million lived in the Federation, 1.22 million in Republika Srpska and 83,500 in Brčko.
The United Nations estimates that there will be 3.058 million in Bosnia in 2050.
Apart from Croatia and Serbia, large numbers of Bosnians live in Germany, Austria and Slovenia.
According to the latest Balkan Public Barometer, 34 per cent would consider leaving to work abroad. In 2015, that figure was 58 per cent.
In 2017, there were 167,000 people registered in Austria whose birthplace was in Bosnia. On January 1, 2018, there were 95,000 Bosnian citizens registered as living in Austria.
On December 31, 1992, there were almost 20,000 Bosnians registered as living in Germany. This number soared during the war, peaking at 341,000 by the end of 1996. By the end of 2010, it had dropped to 152,000. Ever since, that number has been creeping up again.
At the end of 2018, there were 190,000 Bosnians registered in Germany. There were also 396,000 Croats, as many as 20 per cent of whom could be from Bosnia but using Croatian passports. There were also 216,000 citizens of Serbia.
Bosnians come and go. In 2018, the German authorities registered 25,000 people as arriving from Bosnia to live and work and almost 11,000 leaving Germany for Bosnia.
In the years 2014-18, the Germans registered 119,000 arriving from Bosnia while 68,000 left Germany for Bosnia, so in this period 50,000 in effect left permanently for Germany.
Between 2000-18, there were almost 40,000 Bosnians naturalised as Germans. In 2018, the figure was 1,880. It has been at this level for the last 15 years.
More Bosnians die than are born every year and it has been like this since 2009. In 2016, some 30,183 were born and 36,571 died, which means a natural loss of more than 6,000.
In 1997, a record 48,397 were born and 27,875 died, so a natural increase of almost 21,000. This period of positive increase petered out in 2007.
Throughout the post-World War II period, there was a natural increase of population. It peaked in 1958 when there were around 80,000 more births than deaths and then began to decrease.
The 1971 census was the first in which Muslims/Bosniaks were recorded as having become the most numerous ethnicity in Bosnia, a position Serbs had held in the past. According to the 1991 census, Muslims/Bosniaks were 43.5 per cent of the population, Serbs 31.2 per cent and Croats 17.43 per cent. According to the 2013 census, Bosniaks were 50.11 per cent, Serbs 30.78 per cent and Croats 15.43 per cent.