The population of Barbados in 2003 was estimated by the United Nations at 270,000, which placed it as number 170 in population among the 193 nations of the world. In that year approximately 9% of the population was over 65 years of age, with another 23% of the population under 15 years of age. There were 95 males for every 100 females in the country in 2003. According to the UN, the annual population growth rate for 2000–2005 is0.35%, with the projected population for the year 2015 at 280,000. The population density in 2002 was 625 per sq km (1,620 per sq mi).
It was estimated by the Population Reference Bureau that 50% of the population lived in urban areas in 2001. The capital city, Bridgetown, had a population of 133,000 which is close to half of the island's total. Other major towns are Holetown, Speightstown, and Oistins. According to the United Nations, the urban population growth rate for 2000–2005 was 1.5%.