Children under 18 make up 27.4% of Malaysia’s population – DOSM

KUALA LUMPUR – The number of children under 18 in Malaysia in 2023 is estimated to be 9.13 million, which accounts for 27.4 per cent of the country’s total population of 33.38 million.

Chief Statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said that based on the Children Statistics, Malaysia, 2023 published by the Department of Statistics (DOSM) today, the number of boys and girls under the age of 18 is 4.72 million and 4.42 million, respectively.

“The composition of children under five years old in 2023 is 2.35 million, with 1.21 million boys and 1.14 million girls. This group covers 25.7 per cent of the total number of children in Malaysia,” he said in a statement today.

According to Mohd Uzir, the Federal Territory of Putrajaya recorded the highest percentage of children under 18 in 2023 with 41.1 per cent of the population, followed by Kelantan (34.4 per cent) and Terengganu (33.5 per cent).

The Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur recorded the lowest percentage at 22.6 per cent.

“However, Selangor recorded the highest number of children under 18 at 1.81 million, followed by Johor (1.11 million) and Sabah (1.1 million). The lowest number of children under 18 was recorded in the Federal Territory of Labuan at 0.03 million,” he said.

The statistics also indicate that children under the age of five experiencing severe malnutrition increased slightly to 0.3 per cent in 2022 compared to 0.2 per cent in 2021.

In terms of education, the number of pupils in government and government-aided schools in 2022 was 4.96 million, an increase of 0.6 per cent from 4.93 million in the previous year.

During the same period, the number of pupils in private schools dropped by 1.2 per cent to 0.42 million from 0.43 million, he added.

From the child protection perspective, the number of children needing care and protection in 2022 increased by 10.2 per cent to 6,770 persons (4,303 girls, 2,467 boys) compared to 6,144 persons in 2021.

The majority of children in need of care and protection are Bumiputera (73.5 per cent), followed by Indians (nine per cent), Chinese (7.5 per cent) and others (10.1 per cent).

According to the statistics, the number of children involved in crime in 2022 dropped by 12.8 per cent to record 3,013 cases compared to 3,457 cases in 2021, while the number of sexual crime cases involving children increased by 9.5 per cent in 2022 with 1,621 cases as compared to 1,481 cases in 2021.

The Children Statistics, Malaysia, 2023 can be downloaded from the department’s official website at – BERNAMA / pic TMR FILE