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India’s Population Has Already Overtaken China’s, Analysts Estimate.

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  • Friday, 20 Jan, 2023
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India Population Has Already Overtaken China

India may have already surpassed China as the world's most populous nation, a milestone that adds urgency for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to create more jobs and ensure the country sustains its world-beating growth. However, about 800 million people still rely on free food rations from the government.

An impartial census and demography group, the World Population Review, estimated the South Asian country's population at 1.417 billion by the end of 2022.

Compared to China's official count of 1.412 billion from Tuesday, when they revealed the first fall since the 1960s, that's an increase of little over 5 million.

India is expected to have the fastest-growing major economy in the world in the next years due to the country's large youth population. Modi has to take advantage of the demographic dividend by providing employment opportunities for the millions of individuals who join the workforce each year as India diversifies away from agriculture.

The UN had hoped that the goal would be accomplished by the end of the year. WPR estimates that as of January 18th, India's population has reached 1.423,000,000.

Macrotrends, an online research platform, provides an alternative estimate, which comes to 1.428 billion for India at the present time. After delaying population surveys owing to pandemic disruptions, the government did not release its once-every-decade census statistics in 2021.

The pressure on the government to generate employment and provide retirement benefits was shown by last year's decision to limit military service in India to four years. Modi, who will be running for reelection in May 2024, has been working to increase manufacturing's proportion of the GDP from its current 14% to 25%.

Sonal Varma, an economist at Nomura Holdings Inc., has argued that "a broad-based development plan to drive employment across sectors is fundamentally what is required," citing the fact that infrastructure projects and labor-intensive industries, in addition to services, may provide such chances. And the foundations of it are starting to be laid now.

About 800 million people in India, despite the country's tremendous economic expansion before Covid and its relatively good recovery from the epidemic, continue to depend on free food rations from the government, making it the biggest programme of its type in the world.

The third biggest economy in Asia can now meet its own food needs. Production of rice, wheat, and sugar all rank second there. Since it has the world's largest middle class, India is the largest market for sugar and the largest importer of edible oils. As the world's second-largest buyer of gold and steel and the third-largest purchaser of crude oil, it is also one of the greatest consumers of these commodities. In addition, its domestic aviation market is the third biggest in the world.

Population growth in India has slowed, although WPR projects it will remain positive until at least 2050.

Bloomberg Economist Eric Zhu called China's current slowdown as a "growth crushing headwind for a long time" in a note he published on January 18. According to the National Statistics Bureau, China lost 850,000 people from its population in 2022 compared to the previous year.

According to the UN, between 2022 and 2050, more than half of the expected rise in the world population would be centred in only eight countries: the Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, and Tanzania.

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