Tajikistan has a population of 9,275,832 people, of which 70% are under the age of 30 and 35% are between the ages of 14 and 30. Tajiks who speak Tajik (a dialect of Persian) are the main ethnic group, although there are sizeable minorities of Uzbeks and Russians, whose numbers are declining due to emigration. The Pamiris of Badakhshan, a small population of Yaghnobi people, and a sizeable minority of Ismailis are all considered to belong to the larger group of Tajiks. All citizens of Tajikistan are called Tajikistanis.

In 1989, ethnic Russians in Tajikistan made up 7.6% of the population; by 1998 the proportion had reduced to approximately 0.5% following the Tajikistani Civil War which had displaced majority of ethnic Russians. Following the end of the war, Russian emigration continued. The ethnic German population of Tajikistan has also declined due to emigration: having topped at 38,853 in 1979, it has almost vanished since the collapse of the Soviet Union.