In 2016, 5.1 million people died in European Union (EU), some 80 000 less than in the previous year, according to the report released by Eurostat. One third of these deaths occurred to people aged less than 75 (1.7 million, 33 percent), while 1.5 million people died between the ages of 75 and 85 (29 percent) in 2016.
Heart attacks and strokes were the most common cause of death and 1.8 million people died from diseases of the circulatory system, mainly heart attacks and strokes, while 1.3 million died from cancer in 2016. These were the two main causes of death in the EU, responsible for 36 percent and 26 percent of all deaths, respectively, in 2016. The third main cause of death in the EU was diseases of the respiratory system, which killed 422,000 people in 2016 which is 8 percent of all deaths in the EU.
There were 237,000 deaths from accidents and other external causes in the same year, which makes 5 percent of all deaths in the EU, it said. The death rate was highest in Bulgaria, at 1,602 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Latvia and Romania (both 1,476), Lithuania (1,455) and Hungary (1,425). The statement added that the lowest death rate across the EU was recorded in Spain (829 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants), ahead of France (838), Italy (843), Malta (882), Luxembourg (905) and Sweden (913).