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How many people are there in the world?

How many people are there in the world?

May 23, 2024

Recently, the development of global policies and actions have been organized based on a main issue: How many people are there in the world? The answer to this question also generates other questions: where are they concentrated? Where no? How much world population will there be in the long term? And ... how will we face the challenges that this implies?

That is to say, analyzing this has been important in estimating some of the challenges and scope of political and economic organization today . Below we will review the estimates and analyzes made more recently by the United Nations (UN).

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How many people are there in the world according to the UN?

One of the great tasks of the United Nations Organization has been to estimate how many people are there in the world today, and how many there will be in the medium and long term , so that it is possible to adequately design the objectives and the implementation of social and economic policies at the international level.

In the latest demographic report, dated June 2017, the UN has estimated that the current world population is 7,600 million people, a figure that maintains a tendency to high despite the steady decline in fertility levels in several regions.

By the year 2030 the world population is expected to reach 8600 million people. By 2050 it will be 9.8 billion and in 2100 it will reach 11.2 billion. That is, According to the UN, the population will increase by approximately 83 million people per year .

Likewise, and in view of the downward trend in fertility levels, population growth is expected to slow down. However, this generates another challenge because there is also a tendency to the aging of the population, largely due to the fact that life expectancy has increased from 65 to 69 years in men, and from 69 to 73 in women. This constitutes one of the especially important challenges for health and social protection policies .

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The most populous countries currently

Not only is it important to know the current population figures, but trends of population growth or decline among different countries in the medium term, so that it is possible to take the necessary measures in the face of the challenges that are approaching.

It is estimated that approximately 60% of the world's population currently lives in Asia, 16% in Africa, 10% in Europe, 9% in Latin America and the Caribbean, and only 5% in North America and Oceania. Today, China and India are the countries with the most population (they account for 19% and 18% of the total), however it is estimated that by the year 2024, India will surpass China.

Another interesting fact is that Nigeria, one of the 10 most populated countries, will exceed 2050 by the number of the population of the United States, thanks to the great speed with which it is growing. In fact, Africa is the continent that is growing fastest.

Likewise, it is expected that population growth will soon be concentrated in the poorest countries , which also represents an enormous challenge for social development, a matter before which the UN remains optimistic: it is foreseen that in the next few years the survival conditions of all countries will improve considerably.

Growth and decrease in population by region

Given the figures offered by the UN, it is expected that in the next 15 years the world population will increase by more than 1 billion people. These data are indicative and have been obtained based on an average projection of fertility which compares the decrease in fertility rates in countries where there are still large families, in countries where the average has stabilized two children for each woman.

Trend to discharge: Africa

Although there is great uncertainty about fertility trends in Africa for the coming years, it is expected that this continent will continue to grow at high speed (especially in its main regions), due to the large number of young people who are concentrated in said places.

This is how Africa will be one of the key pieces in the dimensions and the world distribution in the short term; which also means that Asia will move to second place in terms of the continent with the highest population growth rates .

Important decrease in Europe

At the opposite pole, the population whose rate is falling is Europe.It is predicted that in 48 of the European regions the population is decreasing considerably, which will be especially noticeable from this year and towards 2050.

This is because the fertility rates of this region are well below that which is necessary to maintain long-term population growth, with the result that it would be difficult to replace generations of inhabitants in many years .

For several decades, the replacement fertility rate in Europe (which is the term with which we know the minimum fertility figures necessary for the population to maintain itself over time -without considering migration-), is far below of the necessary average of 2.1 children per woman.

However, to calculate or forecast population growth and settlements, these figures should also be considered in comparison with the mortality rate . That is why even the very concept of "replacement fertility rate" has been widely discussed by different experts, who consider it a criterion with little rigor.

The UN itself has identified three main elements in the growth of the current population, which in turn constitute a large part of the challenges of international social programs, as well as issues of global responsibility: the fertility rate, the increase in longevity and international migration.

Bibliographic references:

  • United Nations Organization (2017). Population. Retrieved April 30, 2018. Available at //
  • United Nations Organization (2017). The world population will increase by 1000 million by 2030. Retrieved April 30, 2018. Available at //

How many people are in the world? (May 2024).

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