Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo Population

Population in Urban Area, now

14,600,134
  • World: 17th
  • Africa: 2nd
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo: 1st

Population in City Area, 2020-05-28

7,785,965
  • World: 21st
  • Africa: 2nd
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo: 1st

Kinshasa Urban Area Population Graph

Kinshasa Population Review

Kinshasa is the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the most populous city in the country. Located on the banks of the Congo River, Kinshasa is home to 14.4 million people in the urban area and 7.7 million within the city.

Formerly called Léopoldville, Kinshasa is Africa’s second-largest urban area after Cairo and is the world’s largest Francophone urban area, with a population that far surpasses Paris. Kinshasa is one of the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s 26 provinces. Due to this, the administrative boundaries of the province cover a wide area, which means that 90 per cent of the city-province’s land is actually rural in nature and Kinshasa’s formidable population occupies only a small area on Kinshasa’s western side.

Twin capital cities

The Democratic Republic the Congo and the Republic of the Congo sit side by side along the Congo River but are actually separate countries. However, their close quarters mean that their capital cities are actually within sight of each other. In fact, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo is only 1.6 kilometers apart. This makes them the second closest set of capital cities after Vatican City, Vatican, and Rome, Italy.

Crime in Kinshasa

Kinshasa remains a high-risk area when it comes to crime. During both daylight and night time hours violent crimes are perpetrated by groups that pose as the police. Travellers and tourists are especially at risk of attacks. Kinshasa, like many places in the Democratic Republic of Congo, also suffers from an extremely high rate of rape and sexual assault.

Street children can also be aggressive and involved in criminal activity and kidnapping is a very real threat in the DRC. These children, or "Shegués", are often orphaned and subject to abuse by the police and the military. There are an estimated 20,000 children that live on the city’s streets and almost a quarter of these are beggars. Some fled from abusive families or are outcasts, while a significant number are civil war orphans. While most of these children are boys, there is an increasing number of girls on the street as well.

The economy of Kinshasa

Though only 13% of the DRC’s population lives in Kinshasa, the city’s economy accounts for 85% of the country’s GDP. Large manufacturing companies such as Marsavco S.A., All Pack Industries and Angel Cosmetics are located in the centre of town (Gombe) in Kinshasa, which helps bolster the city’s employment rate. In 2004, 70% of the city’s residents were formally employed, with 17% working in the public sector.

Poverty and hunger

Kinshasa continues to have ongoing issues with poverty and hunger. Despite sub-Saharan Africa’s recent improvements in their economy, this hasn’t translated to a reduction in poverty or hunger issues for Kinshasa residents. There is still about 72% of the population that is considered under the poverty line and the DRC remains one of the poorest countries in the world.

Due to the city’s ongoing struggles with poverty, their infrastructure system has issues with running water and electricity with blackouts due to an electrical network in disrepair and exposed lines electrifying pools of rainwater. Regideso is the national public company that has primary responsibility for supplying the country with water serves the city of Kinshasa incompletely and without uniform quality. Ongoing issues affecting access to clean drinking water and sanitation resulting from war has meant that many people in the country suffer from water-borne illnesses and malaria. Approximately 40% of the deaths in the Congo still result from malaria.

Review Updated: November 2, 2020

Kinshasa Urban Area Population History

1950 202,000
1951 217,000
1952 234,000
1953 252,000
1954 272,000
1955 292,000
1956 315,000
1957 339,000
1958 365,000
1959 402,000
1960 443,000
1961 488,000
1962 537,000
1963 591,000
1964 651,000
1965 717,000
1966 790,000
1967 869,000
1968 939,000
1969 1,002,000
1970 1,070,000
1971 1,142,000
1972 1,219,000
1973 1,301,000
1974 1,388,000
1975 1,482,000
1976 1,582,000
1977 1,688,000
1978 1,802,000
1979 1,923,000
1980 2,053,000
1981 2,191,000
1982 2,338,000
1983 2,496,000
1984 2,664,000
1985 2,812,000
1986 2,968,000
1987 3,133,000
1988 3,307,000
1989 3,490,000
1990 3,683,000
1991 3,888,000
1992 4,104,000
1993 4,331,000
1994 4,571,000
1995 4,825,000
1996 5,093,000
1997 5,375,000
1998 5,641,000
1999 5,885,000
2000 6,140,000
2001 6,406,000
2002 6,683,000
2003 6,972,000
2004 7,274,000
2005 7,589,000
2006 7,918,000
2007 8,261,000
2008 8,619,000
2009 8,992,000
2010 9,382,000
2011 9,788,000
2012 10,212,000
2013 10,655,000
2014 11,116,000
2015 11,598,000
2016 12,100,000
2017 12,624,000
2018 13,171,000
2019 13,743,000
2020 14,342,000

Kinshasa Urban Area Population Projections

2021 14,970,000
2022 15,628,000
2023 16,316,000
2024 17,032,000
2025 17,778,000
2026 18,553,000
2027 19,354,000
2028 20,182,000
2029 21,036,000
2030 21,914,000
2031 22,818,000
2032 23,746,000
2033 24,700,000
2034 25,679,000
2035 26,682,000

Map of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo

All Biggest Cities in Democratic Republic of the Congo