India is the second most populous country in the world, but its population is estimated to decrease by 41 million in the next 78 years. While a high population means fewer resources for individuals, population decline is also not a panacea, as recent scientific work has shown. According to a Stanford study, when population growth is negative, knowledge and living standards stagnate in a slowly disappearing population. This is a disastrous result.
India’s population density is expected to decline significantly in the coming years. The populations of India and China currently look similar, but there is a big difference in their density. While India has an average of 476 people per square kilometer, China has 148 people per square kilometer. By 2100, India’s population density is expected to drop to 335 people per square kilometer. The decline in population density in India is expected to be greater than that expected in the rest of the world.
The decline in India’s population density projection is due to lower estimates of the country’s population. India’s population is expected to drop from 141.2 million in 2022 to 100.3 million in 2100, according to the latest report by the Population Division of United Nations Projects. Meanwhile, other countries such as China and the US are expected to see a similar trend. China may see its population shrink from a staggering 93.2 million to just 49.4 million by 2100. These projections are based on a low fertility scenario.
In other words, total fertility is expected to be 0.5 children lower than in 2050. Based on the low fertility projection scenario, India’s fertility rate is expected to fall from 1.76 children per woman to 1.39 in 2032, 1.28 in 2052, 1.2 in 2082, and 1.19 in 2100. A sharp downward trend is evident in India and for the entire world. “As countries become richer, fertility appears to decline at a steady rate, not with a constant population but actually with population decline,” says the Stanford study.
As slow population growth may open new windows of opportunity, African countries may have the potential to drive global growth in the second half of this century. While the projection for most global regions shows a negative outlook for the population, countries such as Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, and Nigeria show an increasing trend in the population base.