1. Has India surpassed China as world’s most populous nation?

Has India surpassed China as world’s most populous nation?

China’s actual population may have been 1.29 billion last year, which is way below than India's 1.33 billion.

By: | Updated: May 25, 2017 5:15 PM
india population, china population, indian population more than china, chinese population indian population, china vs india population, china population less than india, india surpasses china in population Yi Fuxian, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, China’s fertility rate could have been as low as 1.05. (Representational Image: Reuters)

India may have already overtaken China as the world’s most populous nation, an independent researcher suggested on Monday. Quoting numbers presented by the researcher, Financial Times reported that China’s actual population may have been 1.29 billion last year, which is way below 1.37 billion, the official figures quoted by the National Bureau of Statistics. As per the research, which was done by Yi Fuxian, a researcher at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, China’s fertility rate could have been as low as 1.05. However, 2015 official estimates put China’s fertility rate at 1.6 children per woman. The report says that China’s population may have 90 million fewer people than previously believed.

If the calculations come out to be correct, that would mean that India has already surpassed China’s population. Last year, Indian government reported a population of 1.33 billion. However, the United Nations projected the same is likely to happen by 2022 at the earliest.  Yi, a longtime critic of China’s “one-child policy,” which Beijing withdrew last year, believes that its official population statistics have been overstated for decades — a claim echoed by other researchers as well.

Read | Indian population originated in three migration waves: Study

Yi further suggested that China had only 377.6 million new births from 1991 to 2016, far less than the official figure of 464.8 million. This claim ultimately means that China’s official population estimate, currently at 1.38 billion, is incorrect.  China has seen a sharp drop in births due to stringent population control measures introduced by the government in 1979. However, as a repercussion of stringent measures, the country is now facing a population crisis as the number of working-age adults is falling as against proportion of elderly who rely on them.

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    Narendra M Apte
    May 25, 2017 at 6:25 pm
    1. It is possible that due to China government’s policy of one child, growth rate of population in China fell sharply during last two decades. The negative impact of one-child policy may be felt after some twenty years and no one knows what that will be. 2. But let us not overlook the fact that China is an iron curtain country and it is extremely difficult to get full information about any aspect of life in China. Hence no one will ever be able to get reliable information about (a) China’s population, (b) standard of living of the rural population in China and restrictions faced by the rural population as regards migration to China’s urban areas, (c) how Chinese industrial firms manage to keep cost of manufacturing low and whether they get subsidies, and in case they get subsidies, who bears the cost of subsidies, and lastly (d) how many Chinese nationals were killed during period of Social/ cultural revolution in the sixties and seventies.
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