Researchers: World Population to Reach 7 Billion This Year


people-worldThe world population will reach seven billion later this year, with increases in the number of people in Africa off-setting birth rate drops elsewhere, according to a new French study.

Looking much further ahead, the National Institute for Demographic Studies (INED) predicts a continuing rise in the overall population figures until the total stabilizes somewhere between nine and 10 billion worldwide by the end of the century.

From six billion people, the figure estimated in 1999, the gap between the global birth and death rates has swiftly brought the total figure towards the next billion in just 12 years.

INED expects it to take a further 14 years to reach eight billion people before the figures start stabilizing, according to the study which pulls together research carried out by the United Nations, the World Bank and several major national institutes.

In historical terms the growth in the global population has been soaring since the 19th century.

“It has increased seven-fold over the last two hundred years, topping seven billion in 2011, and is expected to reach nine or 10 billion by the end of the 21st century,” the report said.

Just seven countries now account for half the world’s population, and therefore their demographic shifts have a major effect. China tops the list with over 1.33 billion people, with another 1.17 billion in India.

The other five countries, in order, are the United States, Indonesia, Brazil, Pakistan and Nigeria.

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