Jul 28, 2009

Pakistan’s population to double by 2050: UN

Pakistan’s population is growing so incredibly fast that despite decades of family planning efforts, in 40 years it will be the fourth largest country on Earth, a United Nations report said.

United Nations Population Division said Pakistan will overtake Brazil and Indonesia by 2050 to rank fourth in world population, almost doubling to 335 million from its current 180 million.

‘For a country with the resources of Pakistan that’s enormous. How can Pakistan support a population that size with jobs, education, health care? It can’t do so right now with the population it has,’ said Daniel Baker, who heads UN Family Planning Association in Pakistan.

Pakistan currently ranks sixth behind China, India, the United States, Indonesia and Brazil. On achieving independence in 1947, the country had 37 million people and was ranked 15th in the world.

In little than 60 years it has multiplied nearly five times, and now has a population growth rate of 2.2 per cent per year, according to UN population data.

The rapid population growth poses potentially disastrous consequences.

Fifty-seven per cent of Pakistan’s population is between 15 and 64, and 41 per cent are under 15. Only four per cent are over 65. Pakistan is now experiencing its largest ever youth bulge. — APP

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