|Subject: E Timor population to triple by
India to surpass China as most populous nation by 2030: UN
Web posted at: 2/26/2005 2:59:14
Source ::: AFP
UNITED NATIONS: India will overtake China as the world’s most populous nation by 2030, five years earlier than had been expected, a UN study said.
The UN’s latest global population report predicted that India, at 1.103 billion people this year, would reach 1.593 billion by 2050, while China will go from 1.316 billion to 1.392 billion.
But India will actually surpass China as early as 2030 — the last such report had predicted in 2035 — according to the latest available data about birth rates in the two countries, UN demographer Cheryl Sawyer said. “Today, India’s fertility rate is over three children per woman while China’s is about 1.7,” Sawyer said.
“That’s what’s going to be causing the (earlier) crossover,” she said. “The data from China indicate that fertility is a bit lower than we had previously thought.” The report also forecast that world population will hit 9.1 billion by 2050, a jump of 2.6 billion people — with India and Pakistan seeing the biggest increases.
The growth in India, Pakistan and seven other nations — Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Bangladesh, Uganda, the United States, Ethiopia and China — should account for half the total increase, it said.
But the data otherwise show that almost all of the growth will come in developing nations, and the overall increase is “inevitable” even though fertility rates in the developed world continue to plummet, the report said. Indeed, in 15 nations — mostly southern and eastern Europe — the birth rate has fallen below 1.3 children per woman, a level it said was “unprecedented in human history.”
An exception is the United States, where the expected increase is mainly due to the continuing arrival of immigrants, who tend to have more children in the first generation. On the other hand, population is expected to triple in Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Congo, the DRC, East Timor, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger and Uganda.
The projections depend largely on future birth rates, and assume a decline in fertility from 2.6 children per woman now to slightly more than two children by 2050. If fertility rates were half a child below that, world population would still grow to 7.7 billion by 2050; at half a child more per woman, the human race would reach 10.6 billion by then.
Nevertheless, the general trend toward lower birth rates combined with longer life expectancy means that the world population will be getting older, the study said. Those more than 80 years old are believed to number around 86 million now. That figure will soar to 394 million by mid-century, it said.
World Population Prospects The 2004 Revision
In addition, fertility in the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste increased instead of declining over the past decade. For this country, the recent increase of fertility from about 5 children per woman to almost 8 children per woman is likely to be temporary, associated as it is to the political changes that have occurred since the 1999 referendum and the independence of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste from Indonesia in 2002.
p 44 Population (thousands)
1950 2005 2015 2025 2050
Dem. Republic of Timor-Leste............. 433 947 1 486 1 938 3 265
Annual Rate of Change
Dem. Republic of Timor-Leste........ -3.21 5.42 3.55 2.47 1.68
p. 83 Life expectancy at birth (years)
1995-2000 2000-2005 2010-2015 2020-2025 2045-2050
52.6 55.1 60.1 64.7 72.8
p 88 Infant mortality rate (infant deaths per 1000 live births)
107.0 93.7 69.8 50.0 19.3
Under-five mortality (per 1000 live births)
155.3 134.1 96.3 65.2 22.4