Full Text: Xinjiang Population Dynamics and Data

White Paper
The State Council Information Office of the People's Republic of China on Sunday released a white paper titled "Xinjiang Population Dynamics and Data."

XinhuaUpdated: September 26, 2021

III. Demographic Changes in the Uygur Population

Xinjiang has enjoyed peace and development since 1949. After the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region was established in 1955, the CPC and the central government implemented regional autonomy to ensure the equal status of all ethnic groups, and adopted a series of preferential policies to assist and support regional development. Ethnic minority groups in Xinjiang, including the Uygurs, entered an optimal period for development. 

The Uygur population in Xinjiang has continued to grow. 


These data show that since the founding of the PRC, the Uygur population has maintained a relatively high growth rate, a trend shared with the total population growth of the region. 

In particular, the Uygur population grew at a CAGR of 1.67 percent during the first two decades in the 21st century, which was much higher than that of the country's ethnic minority population, which stood at 0.83 percent. 

The Uygur population is on average younger than the overall region. In 2020, in the 0-14, 15-59, and 60 and above age groups, the Uygur proportions were 30.51 percent, 60.95 percent and 8.54 percent, while the overall figures for the region were 22.46 percent, 66.26 percent and 11.28 percent.

The education level of the Uygur population has also continued to improve. According to data from the seventh national census in 2020, 8,944 per 100,000 Uygurs had received a university education, an increase of 6,540 compared to 2000. The average years in education for those aged 15 and above also grew from 7.06 to 9.19. 

Xinjiang's Uygurs are mainly distributed in Kashgar Prefecture, Hotan Prefecture, Aksu Prefecture, and Kizilsu Kirgiz Autonomous Prefecture in the southern part of the region. According to data from the 2020 national census, Uygurs accounted for 83.74 percent of the population in these four prefectures, representing 74.01 percent of the total Uygur population in Xinjiang. The Uygur population has surpassed 2 million in both Kashgar and Hotan, and is approaching 2 million in Aksu. 

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