World Population Day: The Earth is asking for your help

India will surpass China as the world’s most populous country with 1.68 billion people

By The Telegraph in Calcutta
  • Published 11.07.19, 9:08 PM
  • Updated 11.07.19, 9:08 PM
  • a min read
  •  
A crowded street in Mumbai, India's largest and most populous city. (Shutterstock)

World Population Day is observed on July 11. The International day was established by the then-Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme in 1989, an outgrowth of the interest generated by the Day of Five Billion, which was observed on 11 July 1987.

Twenty-five years ago at the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development, 179 governments recognised that reproductive health and gender equality are essential for achieving sustainable development.

The world population stands at 7.7 billion as of 2019. It is expected to become 8.5 billion in 10 years time and 9.7 billion by 2050. But these are just numbers that mask the fact that population growth has been declining since the 1960’s. Regional demography is a key factor in population growth. Western Europe has a slower growth rate than Africa.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is the world’s blueprint for a better future for all on a healthy planet. On World Population Day, we recognize that this mission is closely interrelated with demographic trends including population growth, ageing, migration and urbanization.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres

Population growth over time can have important implications for a country’s economic and social trajectory, as well as its resource allocations and policy agendas.

Top 8 countries with the greatest projected population increase between 2018 and 2050.
Top 8 countries with the greatest projected population increase between 2018 and 2050. (Graphic: Worldpopdata.org)

Below are some highlights from PRB’s World Population Data Sheet (www.worldpopdata.org) projections in 2018:

  • The population of 26 countries, nearly all in Africa, will at least double. Niger in West Africa will see its population nearly triple.
  • A total of 38 countries will have smaller populations in 2050 than in 2018. China will register the largest numerical population decrease―about 50 million―followed by Japan at 25 million and Russia at 9.4 million. Romania will see the largest percentage decline in population (23 percent).
  • The population of the United States will reach 390 million, up from 328 million in 2018.
  • China’s population will decrease by about 50 million from its current size to 1.34 billion. India will supplant China as the world’s most populous country with 1.68 billion people.
  • Nigeria will become the third most populous country as its population rises to 411 million, up 109 percent from 2018. Nigeria is currently the seventh most populous country.