The Government has today decided to postpone the 2021 Census to 2022 on the advice of the Central Statistics Office due to Covid-19.

Pádraig Dalton, Director General of the CSO, said the Census of Population is a unique count of everyone present in Ireland on Census night and provides essential information for planning and decision making.

"It is vital that the Census enables everyone in Ireland to participate so that the information gathered reflects all of our needs and can be used to make decisions that benefit us all," Mr Dalton said.

Mr Dalton said the decision to postpone the Census scheduled for April 2021 until April 2022 was not taken lightly and was based on a number of factors. 

"Foremost in the decision making, was the need to ensure the safety of the general public and CSO field staff, coupled with the need to deliver a Census that achieves the highest possible response rate, across all facets of Irish society," he said.

He also said that the census is a major logistical operation and Covid-19 restrictions have prevented or delayed many key planning activities from taking place over recent months.

"On consideration of these challenges the Government has decided to postpone the 2021 Census until April 2022 to enable the CSO to undertake a comprehensive, inclusive and safe Census which will provide valuable and accurate data for our country in the years ahead," Mr Dalton added.