Population of Suriname 2017


Current population of Suriname is 591,919 people (July 2017 est.).


noun: Surinamer(s)
adjective: Surinamese

Ethnic Groups

Hindustani (also known locally as “East Indians”; their ancestors emigrated from northern India in the latter part of the 19th century) 27.4%, “Maroon” (their African ancestors were brought to the country in the 17th and 18th centuries as slaves and escaped to the interior) 21.7%, Creole (mixed white and black) 15.7%, Javanese 13.7%, mixed 13.4%, other 7.6%, unspecified 0.6% (2012 est.)


Dutch (official), English (widely spoken), Sranang Tongo (Surinamese, sometimes called Taki-Taki, is the native language of Creoles and much of the younger population and is lingua franca among others), Caribbean Hindustani (a dialect of Hindi), Javanese


Protestant 23.6% (includes Evangelical 11.2%, Moravian 11.2%, Reformed .7%, Lutheran .5%), Hindu 22.3%, Roman Catholic 21.6%, Muslim 13.8%, other Christian 3.2%, Winti 1.8%, Jehovah’s Witness 1.2%, other 1.7%, none 7.5%, unspecified 3.2% (2012 est.)

Demographic Profile

Suriname is a pluralistic society consisting primarily of Creoles (persons of mixed African and European heritage), the descendants of escaped African slaves knownas Maroons, and the descendants of Indian and Javanese contract workers. The country overall is in full, post-industrial demographic transition, with a low fertility rate, a moderate mortality rate, and a rising life expectancy. However, the Maroon population of the rural interior lags behind because of lower educational attainment and contraceptive use, higher malnutrition, and significantly less access to electricity, potable water, sanitation, infrastructure, and health care.

Some 350,000 people of Surinamese descent live in the Netherlands, Suriname’s former colonial ruler. In the 19th century, better-educated, largely Dutch-speaking Surinamese began emigrating to the Netherlands. World War II interrupted the outflow, but it resumed after the war when Dutch labor demands grew – emigrants includedall segments of the Creole population. Suriname still is strongly influenced by the Netherlands because most Surinamese have relatives living there and it is the largest supplier of development aid. Other emigration destinations include French Guiana and the United States. Suriname’s immigration rules are flexible, and the country is easy to enter illegally because rainforests obscure its borders. Since the mid-1980s, Brazilians have settled in Suriname’s capital, Paramaribo, or easternSuriname, where they mine gold. This immigration is likely to slowly re-orient Suriname toward its Latin American roots.

Age Structure

0-14 years: 24.62% (male 74,247/female 71,456)
15-24 years: 17.44% (male 52,599/female 50,618)
25-54 years: 44.4% (male 133,835/female 128,980)
55-64 years: 7.54% (male 21,940/female 22,697)
65 years and over: 6.01% (male 15,394/female 20,153) (2017 est.)

Dependency Ratios

total dependency ratio: 50.7
youth dependency ratio: 40.6
elderly dependency ratio: 10.1
potential support ratio: 9.9 (2015 est.)

Median Age

total: 29.5 years
male: 29.1 years
female: 29.9 years (2016 est.)

Population Growth Rate

1% (2017 est.)

Birth Rate

15.8 births/1,000 population (2017 est.)

Death Rate

6.1 deaths/1,000 population (2017 est.)

Net Migration Rate

0.6 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2017 est.)

Population Distribution

population concentrated along the nothern coastal strip; the remainder of the country is sparsely populated


urban population: 66% of total population (2017)
rate of urbanization: 0.75% annual rate of change (2015-20 est.)

Major Urban Areas – Population:

PARAMARIBO (capital) 234,000 (2014)

Sex Ratio

at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
25-54 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
55-64 years: 0.96 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2016 est.)

Maternal Mortality Rate

155 deaths/100,000 live births (2015 est.)

Infant Mortality Rate

total: 25.3 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 29.5 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 20.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2016 est.)

Life Expectancy at Birth

total population: 72.2 years
male: 69.8 years
female: 74.8 years (2016 est.)

Total Fertility Rate

1.93 children born/woman (2017 est.)

Contraceptive Prevalence Rate

47.6% (2010)

Health Expenditures

5.7% of GDP (2014)

Hospital Bed Density

3.1 beds/1,000 population (2010)

Drinking Water Source

urban: 98.1% of population
rural: 88.4% of population
total: 94.8% of population

urban: 1.9% of population
rural: 11.6% of population
total: 5.2% of population (2015 est.)

Sanitation Facility Access

urban: 88.4% of population
rural: 61.4% of population
total: 79.2% of population

urban: 11.6% of population
rural: 38.6% of population
total: 20.8% of population (2015 est.)

HIV/AIDS – Adult Prevalence Rate

1.4% (2016 est.)

HIV/AIDS – People Living with HIV/AIDS

4,900 (2016 est.)

HIV/AIDS – Deaths

<200 (2016 est.)

Major Infectious Disease

degree of risk: very high
food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever
vectorborne disease: dengue fever and malaria

note: active local transmission of Zika virus by Aedes species mosquitoes has been identified in this country (as of August 2016); it poses an important risk (a large number of cases possible) among US citizens if bitten by an infective mosquito; other less common ways to get Zika are through sex, via blood transfusion, or during pregnancy, in which the pregnant woman passes Zika virus to her fetus (2016)

Obesity – Adult Prevalence Rate

26.1% (2014)

Children Under the Age of 5 Years Underweight

5.8% (2010)

Education Expenditures



definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 95.6%
male: 96.1%
female: 95% (2015 est.)

Child Labor – Children Ages 5-14

total number: 6,094
percentage: 6% (2006 est.)

Unemployment, Youth Ages 15-24

total: 16.4%
male: 7.8%
female: 30.7% (2014 est.)