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Home >> World
UPDATED: 16:33, December 23, 2005
World population exceeds 6.5 billion
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The world population has exceeded 6.5 billion on Dec 19, and it is expected to go beyond 7 billion in 2013, statistics published by Institut national d'etudes demographiques (INED) say.

According to the INED statistics, the world population increases by 75 million annually on average. China, India, the United States, Indonesia, Brazil and Pakistan are the most populous countries, with 3.3 billion populations, or about half of the world population.

At the World Population Conference held this summer experts predicted that the world will welcome its 6.5 billionth citizen at the end of 2005.

Director of INED Gilles Pison expressed his surprise to press when talking about the world population. Pison said the population increases by about 200,000 every day worldwide, an equivalent to a city's.

Many experts had forecast that the world population will hit 13 to 15 billion by 2050, but Pison disagreed, "The world's population will reach 9 billion at most, for the growth is slowing down due to women's falling fertility rate."

The pressure of growing populating should not be underestimated though the increase has slowed down, experts said, because the age structure of the world population is relatively young, and the number of newborns is still two times higher than that of the dead. Moreover, the population increase is extremely unbalanced around the world, which brings about different problems for countries in Asia, Europe and Africa.

In regard to the population growth in Asia, Pison predicts China's population will hit 1.5 billion within 20 to 30 years. After that the number will remain stable. India's population will probably outnumber China's in the future.

The population in developed countries will remain stable. But in Africa, the population is likely to exceed 2 billion by 2050.

"Are we ready to welcome two to three billion new population?" Pison showed his concern about the situation. The population increase poses unprecedented challenges, for majority of the increase will be seen in impoverished countries. Population in African counties in particular, will likely to double in future decades. Whether the countries can feed so many people is still a problem.

By People's Daily Online

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