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Death rates in Russia exceed birth rates by 1.7 times in the first half of 2005 - official data

MOSCOW, July 29 (RIA Novosti) -- Death rates in Russia exceeded birth rates by 1.7 times in the first half of 2005, according to statistical data published on the Trade and Economic Development Ministry's website.

According to the official data, death rates in 27 regions of Russia exceeded birth rates by 2-3 times.

Overall, during the first half of this year, 507,300 people were born and 998,500 died, leading to a natural population decrease of 401,200 people.

A natural population increase was registered in 15 areas of the Russian Federation, including the Northern Caucasus republics of Chechnya, Dagestan, and Ingushetia.

The general decrease in population was partially compensated by the increase of migration mainly in the regions with higher-than-average and average levels of development.

For instance, the increase of migration fully compensated for the natural population decrease in Moscow and even exceeded it by 6.2%.