The population of the Netherlands grew to 17.1 million last year but actually fell in one in five local authority areas, the national statistics office CBS said on Tuesday.
In Amsterdam, The Hague, Utrecht and Rotterdam live births outstripped deaths and more people moved to the cities than left.
The big four cities have outstripped the population growth in the rest of the country since 2008.
Nationwide there were six new arrivals for every 1,000 people but in Amsterdam there were three times as many. In total, the city’s new immigrant population grew by 13,000, taking the total to 850,000.
By contrast, the population is shrinking in rural parts of the country, particularly in northern areas and Limburg, as the number of deaths outstrip live births, the CBS said.
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