Cyprus, which likes to promote itself as the island of love, had the highest number of marriages relative to population in the EU in 2019, but also ranked very high on the table for divorces, according to figures published by Eurostat on Thursday.
The EU’s statistical service said that the long-term trend in the European Union shows that the number of marriages is decreasing, while the number of divorces is increasing.
Since 1964, the marriage rate in the EU has declined from 8.0 per 1,000 people in 1964 to 4.3 in 2019. At the same time, the divorce rate has more than doubled, increasing from 0.8 per 1,000 in 1964 to 1.8 in 2019.
In 2019, the EU countries with the highest number of marriages relative to the population were Cyprus (8.9 marriages per 1,000), Lithuania (7.0), Latvia and Hungary (both 6.7), and Romania (6.6). These were followed by Slovakia (5.4), Denmark and Malta (5.3).
In contrast, the lowest rates were around three marriages per 1,000 inhabitants, which were reported in Italy (3.1), Portugal and Slovenia (both 3.2), followed by France, Spain, Luxembourg (all 3.5).
But Cyprus’ high marriage rate is nearly matched by the number of divorces.
In 2019, among EU Member States, the lowest number of divorces relative to the population was registered in Malta and Ireland (0.7 divorces per 1,000 people), followed by Slovenia (1.2), Italy (1.4) and Croatia (1.5).
By contrast, the highest divorce rates were recorded in Latvia, Lithuania and Luxembourg (all 3.1 divorces per 1,000 people), Cyprus (2.6) and Sweden (2.5).