Live Updates: COVID-19 Cases
  • World 21,354,742
    World
    Confirmed: 21,354,742
    Active: 6,443,341
    Recovered: 14,148,044
    Death: 763,357
  • USA 5,476,266
    USA
    Confirmed: 5,476,266
    Active: 2,429,584
    Recovered: 2,875,147
    Death: 171,535
  • Brazil 3,278,895
    Brazil
    Confirmed: 3,278,895
    Active: 788,022
    Recovered: 2,384,302
    Death: 106,571
  • India 2,525,222
    India
    Confirmed: 2,525,222
    Active: 668,532
    Recovered: 1,807,556
    Death: 49,134
  • Russia 912,823
    Russia
    Confirmed: 912,823
    Active: 174,361
    Recovered: 722,964
    Death: 15,498
  • South Africa 579,140
    South Africa
    Confirmed: 579,140
    Active: 105,850
    Recovered: 461,734
    Death: 11,556
  • Peru 516,296
    Peru
    Confirmed: 516,296
    Active: 136,208
    Recovered: 354,232
    Death: 25,856
  • Mexico 511,369
    Mexico
    Confirmed: 511,369
    Active: 109,808
    Recovered: 345,653
    Death: 55,908
  • Chile 382,111
    Chile
    Confirmed: 382,111
    Active: 16,734
    Recovered: 355,037
    Death: 10,340
  • Spain 358,843
    Spain
    Confirmed: 358,843
    Active: 330,226
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 28,617
  • Iran 338,825
    Iran
    Confirmed: 338,825
    Active: 25,683
    Recovered: 293,811
    Death: 19,331
  • UK 316,367
    UK
    Confirmed: 316,367
    Active: 275,009
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 41,358
  • Saudi Arabia 295,902
    Saudi Arabia
    Confirmed: 295,902
    Active: 29,605
    Recovered: 262,959
    Death: 3,338
  • Pakistan 287,300
    Pakistan
    Confirmed: 287,300
    Active: 15,932
    Recovered: 265,215
    Death: 6,153
  • Bangladesh 271,881
    Bangladesh
    Confirmed: 271,881
    Active: 111,667
    Recovered: 156,623
    Death: 3,591
  • Italy 252,809
    Italy
    Confirmed: 252,809
    Active: 14,249
    Recovered: 203,326
    Death: 35,234
  • Turkey 246,861
    Turkey
    Confirmed: 246,861
    Active: 11,947
    Recovered: 228,980
    Death: 5,934
  • Germany 223,774
    Germany
    Confirmed: 223,774
    Active: 11,935
    Recovered: 202,550
    Death: 9,289
  • France 212,211
    France
    Confirmed: 212,211
    Active: 97,957
    Recovered: 83,848
    Death: 30,406
  • Canada 121,652
    Canada
    Confirmed: 121,652
    Active: 4,690
    Recovered: 107,942
    Death: 9,020
  • China 84,808
    China
    Confirmed: 84,808
    Active: 655
    Recovered: 79,519
    Death: 4,634
  • Netherlands 61,840
    Netherlands
    Confirmed: 61,840
    Active: 55,673
    Recovered: ?
    Death: 6,167
  • Australia 23,035
    Australia
    Confirmed: 23,035
    Active: 9,301
    Recovered: 13,355
    Death: 379
  • S. Korea 15,039
    S. Korea
    Confirmed: 15,039
    Active: 833
    Recovered: 13,901
    Death: 305
  • New Zealand 1,609
    New Zealand
    Confirmed: 1,609
    Active: 56
    Recovered: 1,531
    Death: 22

World population likely to shrink after mid-century, Lancet study says

Author at TechGenyz Insights
A Graph On The Computer
A Photograph Of A Graph On The Computer. Credit: Unsplash

The world’s population is likely to shrink after mid-century, forecasting major shifts in global population and economic power, according to a new study that predicts global, regional, and national populations for 195 countries, and their mortality, fertility, and migration rates.

The analysis, published in the journal The Lancet, used data from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017 to project future global, regional, and national population for countries, including India, China, Japan, Italy and the US.

It noted that the US is projected to have population growth until just after mid-century, 364 million in 2062, followed by a moderate decline to 336 million by 2100 — the world’s fourth most populous country.

According to the scientists, including those from the University of Washington, in 2100, the US is forecasted to have the fourth largest working-age population in the world (around 181 million), after India, Nigeria, and China.

They said immigration will likely sustain the US workforce, with the country experiencing the largest net immigration in absolute numbers — more than half a million more people are estimated to immigrate to the country in 2100 than will emigrate out.

However, the researchers warned that the US liberal immigration policies have faced a political backlash in recent years, threatening the country’s potential to sustain population and economic growth.

The research also predicted huge shifts in the global age structure, with an estimated 2.37 billion individuals over 65 years globally in 2100, compared with 1.7 billion under 20 years, underscoring the need for liberal immigration policies in countries with significantly declining working age populations.

“Continued global population growth through the century is no longer the most likely trajectory for the world’s population,” said Christopher Murray from the University of Washington, who led the research.

“This study provides governments of all countries an opportunity to start rethinking their policies on migration, workforces and economic development to address the challenges presented by demographic change,” Murray said.

In the research, they used novel methods for forecasting mortality, fertility, and migration to estimate that by 2100, 183 of 195 countries will have total fertility rates (TFR), which represent the average number of children a woman delivers over her lifetime, below replacement level of 2.1 births per woman.

The scientists noted that the global TFR is predicted to steadily decline, from 2.37 in 2017 to 1.66 in 2100 — well below the minimum rate (2.1) considered necessary to maintain population numbers (replacement level)– with rates falling to around 1.2 in Italy and Spain, and as low as 1.17 in Poland.

They said even slight changes in TFR translate into large differences in population size in countries below the replacement level.

According to the study, increasing TFR by as little as 0.1 births per woman is equivalent to around 500 million more individuals on the planet in 2100.

Based on the findings, they said in several countries, populations will decline unless low fertility is compensated by immigration.

Much of the anticipated fertility decline, according to the scientists, is predicted in high-fertility countries, particularly those in sub-Saharan Africa where rates are expected to fall below the replacement level for the first time.

They said it may change from an average 4.6 births per woman in 2017 to just 1.7 by 2100.

In the African country Niger, where the fertility rate was the highest in the world in 2017 — with women giving birth to an average of seven children — the study noted the rate is projected to decline to around 1.8 by 2100.

The scientists also predicted that there may be dramatic declines in working age-populations in countries such as India and China, which they said may hamper economic growth and lead to shifts in global powers.

According to the study, the world could be multipolar at the end of this century, with India, Nigeria, China, and the US the dominant powers.

“This will truly be a new world, one we should be preparing for today,” they said.

The scientists said the numbers of working-age adults in India is projected to fall from 762 million in 2017 to around 578 million in 2100.

But they said the country is expected to be one of the few — if only — major power in Asia to protect its working-age population over the century.

“It is expected to surpass China’s workforce population in the mid-2020s (where numbers of workers are estimated to decline from 950 million in 2017 to 357 million in 2100) — rising up the GDP rankings from 7th to 3rd,” the researchers noted in a statement to the press.

Citing the limitations of the study, they said while they used the best available data, predictions are constrained by the quantity and quality of past data.

The researchers also noted that past trends are not always predictive of what will happen in the future, and that some factors not included in the model could change the pace of fertility, mortality, or migration.

They said the COVID-19 pandemic has affected local and national health systems throughout the world, and caused over half a million deaths.

However, the scientists believe the excess deaths caused by the pandemic are unlikely to significantly alter longer term forecasting trends of global population.

Career

Subscribe