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Press release 10/05/2004


Weddings in the A.C. of the Basque Country increased by 2.6% in 2002

The age of first-time couples continues to rise: since 1986 it has increased by 4.2 years for grooms and 4.7 for brides.

In 2002, 10,865 weddings were held involving residents of the A.C. of the Basque Country, 273 more than the previous year, according to Eustat data.

The Basque marriage rate (4.8 weddings per thousand inhabitants) is below that of the European Union countries as a whole (5.1%o in 2000) and that of the Spanish state (5.2%o in 2001).

July was the favourite choice of month for marriage ceremonies with 1,597 weddings, followed by September with 1,580 and June with 1,544.

As for the type of ceremony, 7,066 were Catholic weddings, 3,786 were civil ones and 13 corresponded to other religious faiths. Over this seventeen-year period, a trend could be seen pointing to a rise in the number of civil weddings, going from 20.6 % in 1986 to 32.8% in 2002.

By province, it was in Gipuzkoa where civil weddings had the greatest weight (37.6%), followed by Alava (35.5%) and Bizkaia (34.4%). The percentage of civil weddings fell to 25.6% when they were held outside of the Community.

As for the marital status of the couple prior to matrimony, 93.8% of grooms married for the first time, compared to 94.5% of brides.

Parallel to the increase in the maternity age, there was an increase in the age of the couples. In 2002, the average age for first-time grooms was 31.6 and for first-time brides it was 29.6. From 1986 onwards, the average age of grooms rose 4.2 years and 4.7 in the case of brides.

For the 845 couples who settled outside the A.C. of the Basque Country after getting married the favourite destination was Cantabria, followed by Madrid and Castile and Leon. There were differences, as regards the destination, among couples married in the three provinces: those from Alava went mainly to Castile and Leon, Madrid and La Rioja; those from Bizkaia to Cantabria, Madrid and overseas countries and those from Gipuzkoa to overseas countries, followed by Madrid and Navarre.

As regards the place of origin of the couples, 65.8% of weddings were held between residents of the same municipality of the Community and 9.3% resided in neighbouring municipalities.

For further information:

Euskal Estatistika-Erakundea / Instituto Vasco de Estadística
C/ Donostia-San Sebastian, 1 01010 Vitoria-Gasteiz
Tel:+34-945-01 75 00 Fax:+34-945-01 75 01 E-mail: eustat@eustat.eus
Contact person: Martín González Hernández
Tel:+34-945-01 75 49 Fax:+34-945-01 75 01
Press releases on the Internet: www.eustat.eus

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Weddings in the A.C. of the Basque Country increased by 2.6% in 2002

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Marriage statistics
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Año 2002
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