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India Set to Become World’s Most Populous Country in 2023: UN Report

India is projected to surpass China as the world’s most populous country in 2023, with each counting more than 1.4 billion residents this year, according to the 27th edition of the United Nations’ World Population Prospects, 2022. 

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More About The Report:

The world’s population, estimated to reach 8 billion by Nov. 15 this year, could grow to 8.5 billion in 2030, and 10.4 billion in 2100, as the pace of mortality slows, said the report released on World Population Day.

The world’s population was growing at its slowest pace since 1950, having fallen below 1% in 2020, UN estimates showed.

In 2021, the average fertility of the world’s population stood at 2.3 births per woman over a lifetime, having fallen from about 5 births in 1950. Global fertility is projected to decline further to 2.1 births per woman by 2050.

What Is The Concern:

Referring to an earlier World Health Organisation report– estimating about 14.9 million deaths relating to the COVID-19 pandemic between January 2020 and December 2021, the UN report said global life expectancy at birth fell to 71 years in 2021 from 72.8 years in 2019, mostly due to the pandemic.

The Majority Contributors:

The United Nations said more than half of the projected increase in the global population up to 2050 will be concentrated in eight countries – Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines and the United Republic of Tanzania. Countries of sub-Saharan Africa are expected to contribute more than half of the increase anticipated through 2050.

What Has Been Said:

According to the UN, falling mortality rate first led to a “spectacular population growth”, peaking at 2.1% per year between 1962 and 1965. Between 1950 and 1987, world population doubled from 2.5 billion to 5 billion. But as fewer children were born generation to generation, growth started to slow.

The UNFPA projects world population to peak at 10.4 billion in the 2080s and stay there until the end of the century.

According to the UN, 60% of the global population lives in a region where the fertility rate is below replacement level — up from 40% in 1990 — and international migration is now the driver of growth in many countries, with 281 million people living outside their country of birth in 2020.

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