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Thursday, May 23, 2024

India overtakes China as the most populous country in the world

According to estimates released by the United Nations on April 19, India has over three million more people than China and will become the world’s most populated nation by mid-year. According to the UN Population Fund’s State of the World Population report, as of mid-year, India’s population would be 1.4286 billion, surpassing China’s population of 1.4257 billion.

For the first time since the catastrophic agricultural policies of previous leader Mao Zedong in 1960, China’s population dropped last year. The rising cost of living and the rising number of women entering the workforce and pursuing higher education have been cited as reasons for the slowdown.

After enforcing a stringent “one-child policy” in the 1980s out of concern over overpopulation, Beijing relaxed its stance on family size in 2016 and will allow couples to have three children beginning in 2021. As the country’s workforce ages and birth rates fall, China will soon see a demographic downturn.

Official measures have not been successful in stopping the drop, despite the fact that some areas have proclaimed goals to increase birth rates. Since India has not performed a census since 2011, the country’s current population is unknown.

The once-every-decade Indian census had been scheduled for 2021, but it was postponed because of the coronavirus epidemic. It is therefore improbable that the enormous exercise will commence any time soon due to logistical challenges and political reluctance.

Some think the administration is purposefully postponing the census so it may conceal information on divisive matters like unemployment in advance of next year’s national elections. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government is having trouble finding employment for the millions of young people who join the labour force each year.

Half of the people living in this Asian superpower are under the age of 30. Many of the country’s largest cities are already straining to meet the demands of the country’s expanding population in terms of energy, food, and housing.

Since 1950, when the United Nations first started collecting statistics on population growth, India’s population has increased by more than a billion people, as reported by the Pew Research Centre. According to the latest U.N. projection, the world’s population is expected to reach 8.04 billion by the middle of 2023.

According to other U.N. projections forecasting global population development between now and 2100, released in July, many nations, particularly in Europe and Asia, should anticipate a demographic downturn over the next decades.

In contrast, Africa’s population is projected to increase from 1.4 billion in 2015 to 3.9 billion in 2100, making up 38 percent of the world’s population compared to 18 percent now.

Eight countries with populations of over 10 million, mostly in Europe, saw population declines during the last decade. Because of its ageing population, Japan will lose more than three million people between 2011 and 2021.

Meanwhile, the United Nations predicts that the global population will begin to fall in the 2090s, having peaked at 10.4 billion.

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