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Wales in summary

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  • Release date: 5 March 2018
An overview of Wales from the statistics we publish.
3.1 million people (mid-2016).1

The largest urban areas are Cardiff (361,500), Swansea (244,500) and Newport (149,100) (mid 2016).1

About 1 in 20 of the UK population live in Wales.2

1.3 million households (2016).3

The total land surface of Wales comprises nearly 2.1 million hectares, of which some 80 per cent is devoted to agriculture.4

Life expectancy from birth in Wales is 78.4 years for males and 82.4 years for females (2014-16).5

Gross Value Added (GVA) estimates the economic activity of an area. Workplace GVA in Wales was £59.6 billion in 2016. Per head of population this is just under three quarters of the UK (less extra-regio) average (72.7 per cent).6

There were 1.87 million licensed road vehicles in Wales in 2016.7

Just under 64 per cent of local authority municipal waste was prepared for reuse, recycling or composting in 2016-17.8

In January 2017 there were 1,547 maintained schools, and approximately 467,000 pupils. 475 schools teach through the medium of Welsh.9

There were 128,005 enrollments at higher education institutions in Wales in 2016/17.10

In 2016 there were 10.0 million sheep and lambs around 30 per cent of the UK total.11

There were around 32,900 babies born in 2016.12

Overall greenhouse gas emissions have fallen by 20 per cent between the base year 1990 and 2015.13

Around one fifth of the population of Wales say they can speak Welsh.14
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