United Nations Nations Unies

Population Division
Department of Economic and Social Affairs

India Becomes a Billionaire

World's Largest Democracy to Reach One Billion Persons on Independence Day

  1. According to the official United Nations population estimates and projections (United Nations Population Division, World Population Prospects: The 1998 Revision), India's population will reach the 1 billion mark on August 15 this year, coinciding with its Independence Day. China's population passed the 1 billion mark 19 years earlier, on July 31, 1980.

  2. China remains the most populous country in the world, with a total population size of 1.27 billion in mid-1999, followed by India. The country with the third largest population is the United States, with 276 million people.

  3. It is projected that India will have a larger population than China by the year 2045, when United Nations projections indicate a total population of India of 1.501 billion and of China of 1.496 billion.

  4. India, with an annual population growth rate of 1.65 per cent, is the largest contributor to world population growth, accounting for 21 per cent of the 78 million annual increment to the world. China contribes about 15 per cent to annual world population growth.

  5. By 2016, the population of India (1.22 billion) is expected to be larger than the population of all the more developed countries combined (that is, all the countries of Europe (including Russia), Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Canada and the United States).

  6. China and India will most likely remain the only members of the 1 billion-population club. According to the United Nations projections, no other country will reach a population size of 1 billion persons.


Source: United Nations Population Division

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