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Press release 24.02.12

MARRIAGE STATISTICS (EMAT) in the Basque Country 2010

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The number of marriages was down 1.7% in 2010

20% of couples shared the same residence before marriage, against 59% who did so in 2007

The total number of marriages stood at 9075 in 2010, 1.7% less than one year previously, of which 142 were homosexual, according to Eustat data.

If we take into account the marriages of residents of the Basque Country between individuals of a different sex, the number was 8933. 170 less marriages took place than the previous year, which was a drop of 1.9%.

The Basque marriage rate (3.8 weddings per thousand inhabitants) was slightly above the Spanish rate (3.7%o), but below that for European Union countries as a whole, which stood at 4.5%o in 2009.

In line with the increase in the age of maternity, there was also an increase in the age of marriage. In 2010, the average age of single men when they got married was 34.1 years old, whilst for single women it stood at 32.3. In the last 25 years, since 1986, the average age of wives has risen by 7.4 years and for husbands it has risen by 6.7 years.

Average age at first marriage by sex

Taking into account civil status prior to marriage, single men represented 89.4%, a slightly lower figure than the 90.5% of single women. July, with 1522 weddings, was in first place as the chosen month for getting married, followed by June with 1276 and September, with 1228.

64% of weddings that took place in 2010 were civil

The number of civil weddings has risen throughout the last few years, going from 23% in 1990 to 64% in 2010, when they stood at 5710. There were 3205 catholic weddings and 18 that corresponded to other religious faiths.

By provinces, the most civil weddings took place in Gipuzkoa (67%), followed by Bizkaia (64%) and Álava (60%). However, in the case of Basque Country residents that got married outside our Community, the percentage falls to 48%.

20% of new couples lived together before getting married in 2010

20% of couples shared the same residence before getting married, a figure that confirms the decrease that started in 2008. The percentage of couples that lived together before marriage has changed in the last few years, from a minimum in 1996, when just 19% of couples had the same address before getting married, up to 2007, when the maximum figure of 59% was reached, to diminish rapidly since then.

Couples sharing residence before marriage (%)

The preferred destinations for the 556 couples who fixed their residency outside the Basque Country after getting married were Madrid, Cantabria and Navarra. In terms of the destination, there were differences between the marriages that took place in the three provinces: those from Álava preferred Madrid, La Rioja and Navarra; those from Bizkaia preferred Cantabria, Madrid and Burgos and those from Gipuzkoa preferred Madrid, Navarra and France.

In 15% of unions at least one of the spouses was of foreign nationality

Regarding the nationality of the individuals entering into marriage, in 1363 marriages (15.3% of the total) at least one of the spouses was foreign. In 50.2% of these couples the wife had foreign nationality, in 29.5% the husband and in the remaining 20.3%, both spouses were foreigners.

Amongst recently married women the most common countries of origin were Brazil, with 148 spouses, Columbia (127), Bolivia (80), Dominican Republic (43), Argentina (43) and Ecuador (43). Regarding new husbands, 88 came from Morocco, Columbia (68), Argentina (40), Algeria (37), Bolivia (37) and Portugal (35).

The number of homosexual marriages increased by 11% compared to the previous year

In 2010 there were 142 weddings between individuals of the same sex, 75 being between men and 67 between women. Regarding distribution between provinces, 18 were in Álava, 46 in Gipuzkoa, 68 in Bizkaia and 10 outside the Basque Country.

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-maileustat@eustat.es Contact: Martín González Hernández Tel:+34-945-01 75 49 Fax:+34-945-01 75 01 More press releases on MARRIAGE STATISTICS of the Basque Country Databank on MARRIAGE STATISTICS of the Basque Country

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