In recent years, the world population has been undergoing a seismic shift. Places like India, for example, are seeing a rapid rise in population, likely due to fertility rates and lengthening life spans. China, meanwhile, is facing a completely different population dynamic. After the introduction of the one-child policy in the late 1970s, China has been experiencing some startling population changes, the most significant of which is a population decline. At the end of 2022, China’s population stood at 1.4 billion, a decreased number.
This marks the first population decline since 1961 when Chinese birth and immigration rates reached their highest levels. The implications of this population decline are far-reaching. Economically, it means a smaller tax base, subsequent economic downsizing, and a restructuring of the way China provides social services. Socially, it may also lead to a decrease in the intergenerational transfer of cultural history, an issue that has caused a great deal of contention in China. International news about the decline of China’s population has also drawn attention to India.
By 2023, the Indian population is expected to overtake the Chinese, making India the most populous nation on earth. India is already one of the world’s most populous countries and its population is expected to continue rising as fertility rates remain high. It’s a remarkable shift and one that is likely to cause a ripple effect throughout the years to come as the global population distribution changes.