IBGE releases population estimates of municipalities for 2017

August 30, 2017 09h00 AM | Last Updated: September 04, 2017 09h29 AM

The IBGE released today the estimates of the resident population for the 5,570 Brazilian municipalities, based on the reference date of July 1, 2017. The estimated population of Brazil was 207.7 million inhabitants and the estimated population growth rate was 0.77% between 2016 and 2017, slightly less than the 2015-2016 rate (0.80%).

The municipality of São Paulo remained as the most populated in Brazil, with 12.1 million inhabitants, followed by Rio de Janeiro (6.5 million inhabitants), Brasília and Salvador (about 3.0 million inhabitants each). Seventeen Brazilian municipalities had a population greater than 1 million inhabitants, adding up to 45.5 million inhabitants or 21.9% of the whole population of Brazil. Serra da Saudade (MG) was the less populated Brazilian municipality (812 inhabitants), followed by Borá (SP), with 839 inhabitants, and Araguainha (MT), with 931 inhabitants. It was estimated that nearly one fourth of the municipalities (24.746%) had their population reduced between 2016 and 2017.

In the ranking of the states, the three most populated were in the Southeast Region, whereas the five less populated were in the North Region. Adding up to 45.1 million inhabitants, the leader was the state of São Paulo, which concentrated 21.7% of the Brazilian population. Adding up to 522.6 thousand inhabitants, Roraima is the less populated state (0.3% of the whole population).

The municipal population estimates are one of the parameters used by the Brazilian Court of Audit to calculate the State and Municipal Revenue Sharing Fund and are key to compute a number of social, economic and demographic indicators. This annual release complies with article 102 of the Law no. 8,443/1992 and with the Complementary Law no. 143/2013.

The population of the municipalities was estimated by a mathematical procedure and was the result of the distribution of the population of the states, projected among their municipalities by demographic methods. The method is based on the projection of the state population and on the growth trend of the municipalities, outlined by the municipal population captured by the two most recent Population Censuses (2000 and 2010). The municipal estimates also incorporated changes in the municipal territory boundaries that took place after 2010.

The table containing the estimated population for each municipality was published in the Official Gazette - DOU today. The methodological note and the population estimates for the 5,570 Brazilian municipalities and for the 27 Federation Units can be accessed here.


1st SP São Paulo                       12,106,920
2nd RJ Rio de Janeiro                          6,520,266
3rd DF Brasília                          3,039,444
4th BA Salvador                          2,953,986
5th CE Fortaleza                          2,627,482
6th MG Belo Horizonte                          2,523,794
7th AM Manaus                          2,130,264
8th PR Curitiba                          1,908,359
9th PE Recife                          1,633,697
10th RS Porto Alegre                          1,484,941
11th GO Goiânia                          1,466,105
12th PA Belém                          1,452,275
13th SP Guarulhos                          1,349,113
14th SP Campinas                          1,182,429
15th MA São Luís                          1,091,868
16th RJ São Gonçalo                          1,049,826
17th AL Maceió                          1,029,129
TOTAL                           45,549,898
% in relation to the whole BRAZIL 21.9%
TOTAL BRAZIL                     207,660,929
 Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas - DPE, Coordenação de População e Indicadores Sociais - COPIS.

In 2017, slightly more than half of the Brazilian population (56.5% or 117.2 million inhabitants) lives in only 5.6% of the municipalities (310), which were those with more than 100 thousand inhabitants.

The municipalities with more than 500 thousand inhabitants (42) concentrated 30.2% of the Brazilian population (62.6 million inhabitants). On the other hand, most of the Brazilian municipalities (68.3%) had up to 20 thousand inhabitants and accounted for only 15.5% of the Brazilian population (32.2 million inhabitants).                                          

Excluding the capitals, the ten most populated municipalities were Guarulhos (SP), Campinas (SP), São Gonçalo (RJ), Duque de Caxias (RJ), São Bernardo do Campo (SP), Nova Iguaçu (RJ), Santo André (SP), São José dos Campos (SP), Osasco (SP) and Jaboatão dos Guararapes (PE).

1st SP Guarulhos                         1,349,113
2nd SP Campinas                         1,182,429
3rd RJ São Gonçalo                         1,049,826
4th RJ Duque de Caxias                             890,997
5th SP São Bernardo do Campo                             827,437
6th RJ Nova Iguaçu                             798,647
7th SP Santo André                             715,231
8th SP São José dos Campos                             703,219
9th SP Osasco                             697,886
10th PE Jaboatão dos Guararapes                             695,956
11th SP Ribeirão Preto                             682,302
12th MG Uberlândia                             676,613
13th SP Sorocaba                             659,871
14th MG Contagem                             658,580
15th BA Feira de Santana                             627,477
16th SC Joinville                             577,077
17th MG Juiz de Fora                             563,769
18th PR Londrina                             558,439
19th GO Aparecida de Goiânia                             542,090
20th PA Ananindeua                             516,057
21st ES Serra                             502,618
TOTAL                       15,475,634
% in relation to the whole BRAZIL 7.5%
TOTAL BRAZIL                     207,660,929
 Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas - DPE, Coordenação de População e Indicadores Sociais - COPIS.

Serra da Saudade (MG) was the less populated Brazilian municipality in 2017 – estimated at 812 inhabitants –, followed by Borá (SP), with 839 inhabitants, and Araguainha (MT), with 931 inhabitants. Those were the only three municipalities with less than one thousand inhabitants on July 1, 2017.

Considering the composition of the Metropolitan Areas - RMs and Integrated Development Areas - RIDEs on December 31, 2016, the RM of São Paulo remained as the most populated, with 21.4 million inhabitants, followed by the RM of Rio de Janeiro (12.4 million inhabitants), the RM of Belo Horizonte (5.9 million inhabitants), and the RIDE of the Federal District and surroundings (4.4 million inhabitants). Among the RMs and RIDEs, 28 of them had a population above 1 million inhabitants and added up to 97.9 million inhabitants, accounting for 47.1% of the whole population.

The set of 27 capitals added up to 49.4 million inhabitants, representing 23.8% of the Brazilian population. Palmas (2.48%) recorded the highest geometric growth rate among the capitals in the 2016-2017 period and, the lowest, Porto Alegre (0.26%).

1st SP  São Paulo                          12,106,920 0.57%
2nd RJ  Rio de Janeiro                             6,520,266 0.33%
3rd DF  Brasília                             3,039,444 2.09%
4th BA  Salvador                             2,953,986 0.54%
5th CE  Fortaleza                             2,627,482 0.68%
6th MG  Belo Horizonte                             2,523,794 0.41%
7th AM  Manaus                             2,130,264 1.71%
8th PR  Curitiba                             1,908,359 0.76%
9th PE  Recife                             1,633,697 0.50%
10th RS  Porto Alegre                             1,484,941 0.26%
11th GO  Goiânia                             1,466,105 1.21%
12th PA  Belém                             1,452,275 0.43%
13th MA  São Luís                             1,091,868 0.82%
14th AL  Maceió                             1,029,129 0.73%
15th RN  Natal                                885,180 0.86%
16th MS  Campo Grande                                874,210 1.18%
17th PI  Teresina                                850,198 0.33%
18th PB  João Pessoa                                811,598 1.23%
19th SE  Aracaju                                650,106 1.34%
20th MT  Cuiabá                                590,118 0.81%
21st RO  Porto Velho                                519,436 1.61%
22nd SC  Florianópolis                                485,838 1.68%
23rd AP  Macapá                                474,706 1.98%
24th AC  Rio Branco                                383,443 1.69%
25th ES  Vitória                                363,140 1.00%
26th RR  Boa Vista                                332,020 1.72%
27th TO  Palmas                                286,787 2.48%
  TOTAL CAPITALS                           49,475,310  
% in relation to the whole BRAZIL 23.8%  
TOTAL BRAZIL                       207,660,929  
 Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas - DPE, Coordenação de População e Indicadores Sociais - COPIS.

Reduced populations estimated for nearly one fourth of Brazilian municipalities

According to the Population Project 2013, the geometric growth rate of the Brazilian population was 0.77% between 2016 and 2017, below that estimated for the 2015-2016 period (0.80%).

Nearly one fourth of the 5,570 Brazilian municipalities (24.7% or 1,378) posted negative geometric rates, i.e., had their population reduced. In more than half of the municipalities (53.6% or 2,986), the population growth rates were below 1%, and, in 258 municipalities (4.6% of the total), the growth was equal or higher than 2%.

The group of municipalities with up to 20 thousand inhabitants registered the highest proportion of those that had their population reduced (32.5% or 1,236 municipalities). On the other hand, those between 100 thousand and one million inhabitants concentrated the biggest proportions of municipalities growing above 1% (45.5% or 133 municipalities). Ten out of the 17 municipalities with more than one million inhabitants registered growth rates between 0.5% and 1% per year.

The North and Central-West recorded the highest proportions of municipalities with growth rates above 1%. On the other hand, the South Region posted the highest proportion of municipalities with negative rates.