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15 July 2015

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Population, Nationalities and Religions


Hunan is one of the most populous provinces in China. As of midnight on November 1, 2020, Hunan’s population reached 66,444,864, ranking 7th nationwide, according to data of the 7th national population census conducted in 2020. Hunan’s permanent resident population increased 761,000 over the past decade. 

According to the latest census data, of the total population of Hunan Province, male population accounted for 51.16% while female population making up 48.84%. Gender ratio of Hunan’s population reached 104.77 males to 100 females. It was 1.04 percentage points lower than that in 2010 when the previous census was conducted.

The people aged between 0 and 14 accounted for 19.52% of the total population; those between 15 and 59 made up 60.60%; and, those aged 60 and above occupied 19.88%. The proportion of the people aged between 0 and 14, and aged 60 and above were higher than that in the 6th national population census ten years ago. 

Chinese source:


Hunan is a multiethnic province, where the Han nationality and other 55 ethnic groups reside. According to the fifth nationwide population census, the population of the Han nationality is 56.8635 million, accounting for 89.9 percent of the province’s total; the population of the ethnic groups exceeds 6.4107 million, accounting for 10.1 percent of the province’s total.

Among the ethnic minorities, there are 2.6395 million Tujia people, 1.9215 million Miao people, 842,100 million Dong people, 70,460 million Yao people, 12,560 million Bai people, 97,400 Hui people, 23,600 Zhuang people, 15,900 Mongols, 8,206 Manchus, and 7,939 Uygur people.

As for distribution, Hunan has one autonomous prefecture (Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, composed of one city and seven counties); 7 autonomous counties (Chengbu, Mayang Miao Autonomous Counties; Xinhuang, Zhijiang, and Tongdao Dong Autonomous Counties; Jinzhou Miao and Dong Autonomous County; and, Jianghua Yao Autonomous County); and, 100 autonomous townships. Autonomous region preferential policies are also available in Sangzhi County, and Yongding District of Zhangjiajie. The areas inhabited by ethnic groups accounts for 28% of the provincial total. 

For more information about the ethnic groups in Hunan, please refer to National Customs. 


Hunan has over 6.4 million religious people, including 4.1 million Buddhists, 1.75 million Taoists, 160,000 Muslims, 50,000 Catholics and 330,000 Christians. There are about 11,000 clergies working for religious communities. 

Chinese source:

Updated on May, 2021