Projections of population growth

Projected world population growth

According to current projections of population growth, the world population of humans will continue to grow until at least 2050, with the estimated population, based on current growth trends, to reach 9 billion in 2040,[1][2] and some predictions putting the population in 2050 as high as 11 billion.[3] World population passed the 7 billion mark on October 31, 2011.[1] According to the United Nations' World Population Prospects report, [4] the world population is currently growing by approximately 74 million people per year. Current United Nations predictions estimate that the world population will reach 9.0 billion around 2050, assuming a decrease in average fertility rate from 2.5 down to 2.0.[5][6] Almost all growth will take place in the less developed regions, where today's 5.3 billion population of underdeveloped countries is expected to increase to 7.8 billion in 2050. By contrast, the population of the more developed regions will remain mostly unchanged, at 1.2 billion. An exception is the United States population, which is expected to increase 44% from 305 million in 2008 to 439 million in 2050.[7] In 2000-2005, the average world fertility was 2.65 children per woman, about half the level in 1950-1955 (5 children per woman). In the medium variant, global fertility is projected to decline further to 2.05 children per woman.

During 2005-2050, nine countries are expected to account for half of the world's projected population increase: India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, United States, Ethiopia, and China, listed according to the size of their contribution to population growth. China would be higher still in this list were it not for its One Child Policy. Global life expectancy at birth, which is estimated to have risen from 46 years in 1950-1955 to 65 years in 2000-2005, is expected to keep rising to reach 75 years in 2045-2050. In the more developed regions, the projected increase is from 75 years today to 82 years by mid-century. Among the least developed countries, where life expectancy today is just under 50 years, it is expected to be 66 years in 2045-2050. The population of 51 countries or areas, including Germany, Italy, Japan and most of the successor States of the former Soviet Union, is expected to be lower in 2050 than in 2005.

During 2005-2050, the net number of international migrants to more developed regions is projected to be 98 million. Because deaths are projected to exceed births in the more developed regions by 73 million during 2005-2050, population growth in those regions will largely be due to international migration. In 2000-2005, net migration in 28 countries either prevented population decline or doubled at least the contribution of natural increase (births minus deaths) to population growth. These countries include Austria, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Qatar, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom.[8] Birth rates are now falling in a small percentage of developing countries, while the actual populations in many developed countries would fall without immigration.[5] By 2050 (Medium variant), India will have 1.6 billion people, China 1.4 billion, United States 439 million, Pakistan 309 million, Indonesia 280 million, Nigeria 259 million, Bangladesh 258 million, Brazil 245 million, Democratic Republic of the Congo 189 million, Ethiopia 185 million, Philippines 141 million, Mexico 132 million, Egypt 125 million, Vietnam 120 million, Russia 109 million, Japan 103 million, Iran 100 million, Turkey 99 million, Uganda 93 million, Tanzania 85 million, Kenya 85 million and United Kingdom 80 million.


  • Africa - 1.9 billion
  • Asia - 5.2 billion
  • Europe - 674 million
  • Latin America & Caribbean - 765 million
  • North America - 448 million [9]

Walter Greiling projected in the 1950s that world population would reach a peak of about nine billion, in the 21st century, and then stop to grow, after a readjustment of the Third World and a sanitation of the tropics.[10] Recent extrapolations from available figures for population growth show that the population of Earth will stop increasing around 2070.[11] However, the U.N. projects the world population in 2300 to be about 10 billion, so any growth would be predicted to be slow between 2070 and 2300, but any changes in future birthrates or in projections of future life expectancy due to major medical advances could invalidate these projections.[12]

Most populous nations by 2030

The United Nations Population Fund has calculated, based on current trends, the future population of the world's countries. These figures can easily change as events such as wars, diseases, or dramatic demographic changes would all greatly affect the results. The study projected the world population in 2030 to be 8.321 billion.

Change Country Projected
(per cent)
 World 8,321,380 6,895,889 +20.7%
1 2 +1  India 1,523,482 1,224,614 +24.4%
2 1 -1  China 1,393,076 1,341,335 +3.9%
3 3 =  United States 361,680 310,384 +16.5%
4 4 =  Indonesia 279,659 239,871 +16.6%
5 7 +2  Nigeria 257,815 158,423 +62.7%
6 6 =  Pakistan 234,432 173,593 +35.0%
7 5 -2  Brazil 220 492 194 946 +13.1%
8 8 =  Bangladesh 181,863 148,692 +22.3%
9 9 =  Russia 136,429 142,958 -4.6%
10 11 +1  Mexico 135,398 113,423 +19.4%

See also


  1. ^ a b "World Population Clock". Worldometers. Retrieved 24 October 2011. 
  2. ^ International Data Base (IDB) — World Population
  3. ^
  4. ^ World Population Prospects
  5. ^ a b United Nations Population Division Home Page, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs
  6. ^ Microsoft Word - WorldPOP2300.doc
  7. ^ US Census Bureau estimates and news release.of AUG. 14, 2008
  8. ^[dead link]
  9. ^ World Population Prospects: The 2006 Revision
  10. ^ Walter Greiling: Wie werden wir leben? ("How are we going to live?") Econ publishers, Munich 1954
  11. ^ Ciro Pabón y Ciro Pabón, Manual de Urbanismo, Editorial Leyer, Bogotá, 2007, ISBN 978-958-711-296-2
  12. ^ United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. World Population to 2300. 2004. Executive Summary, Page 2.

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