Fifty-three out of Russia's 85 federal subjects saw their populations drop in 2015, the RBC news website reported Tuesday, citing official statistics data.
Last year, the number of regions with a shrinking population increased from 46 to 53 — the biggest jump since 2000, when Vladimir Putin first became president, the website reported.
In 40 out of those 53 regions, the population has been falling for the past 15 years. Among them are the Tula region, the Novgorod region, the Vladimir region and other federal subjects in Central Russia and the Far East.
According to data from Rosstat state statistics service, the population of Russia as of Jan. 1, 2016 stands at 146.52 million people, which is 0.17 percent more than a year ago but less than in January of 2000, when the number of Russian residents was estimated at 146.89 million, RBC reported.
In 2014, Russia added two new regions to its list of federal subjects — Crimea and Sevastopol — with a total population of 2 million people.