India poised to surpass China's population

World population to touch 9.6 billion by 2050

By Kundan Pandey
Published: Friday 14 June 2013

graph1India will surpass China to become the world’s most populous country by 2028, according to a UN report released on June 13. At present India is the second most populous country. The world’s population, now estimated at 7.2 billion, could reach 8.1 billion by 2025 and up to 9.6 billion by 2050.

The report—World Population Prospects: the 2012 Revision—says that by 2028 both countries will have populations of around 1.45 billion. Thereafter, India’s population will continue to grow for several decades to around 1.6 billion and then decline slowly to 1.5 billion in 2100. The population of China, on the other hand, is expected to start decreasing after 2030, possibly reaching 1.1 billion in 2100.

At present, India has 1,252 million people. The country has witnessed manifold increase since 1950 when the population of the country was 376 million. Since then China has topped the list of most populous countries. In 1950, China had total population of 544 million, which has increased to 1,386 million in 2013 (see graphs).

graph2The world population of 7.2 billion in mid-2013 is projected to increase by almost one billion people within the next twelve years, reaching 8.1 billion in 2025, and to further increase to 9.6 billion in 2050 and 10.9 billion by 2100 (figure 1). 

High fertility countries

At the country level, much of the overall increase between 2013 and 2050 is projected to take place in high-fertility countries, mainly in Africa, as  well as countries with large populations such as India, 

Indonesia, Pakistan, the Philippines and the US. 

Half of all population growth is concentrated in a small number of countries. During 2013-2100, eight countries are expected to account for over half of the world’s projected population increase: Nigeria, India, the United Republic of Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, graph3Niger, Uganda, Ethiopia and the US, listed according to the size of their contribution to global population growth.










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