Context Of the World Population Prospects 2019 report:
A stable planet: on World Population Prospects 2019 report
Key points of the World Population Prospects 2019 report:
India is set to become the most populous nation; improving the quality of life is crucial
The UN’s World Population Prospects 2019 report is out. It suggests that national leaders must redouble their efforts to raise education, health and living standards for people everywhere
- The world as a whole will have around 8.5 billion people in just over a decade from now. The number could go up to 9.7 billion by mid-century.
- There are strong arguments in favour of stabilising population numbers. For this raising the quality of life of people and achieving sustainable development are important.
- The UN report shows migration to countries with a falling ratio of working-age people to those above 65 will be steady. These economies open up to workers to sustain economic production. Japan has the lowest such ratio, then Europe and the Caribbean are there. In over three decades, North America, Eastern, and Southeastern Asia will join this group
How India is placed inWorld Population Prospects 2019 report?
- India is likely to become the most populous country by 2027 surpassing China and host 1.64 billion people by 2050
- India meanwhile will have a vast number of young people but insufficient natural resources. Preparing for the changes and opportunities migration offers will depend on a skills revolution.
What India should do?
- Reducing fertility rate: At the national level, achieving a reduction in fertility rates in States such as Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, and Chhattisgarh — which are high as per Sample Registration System data — is a challenge for India as it seeks to stabilize population
- Improving health and education for women: This is possible if the State governments set their minds to it. They must singularly focus on improving education and health access for women. This will help them in getting employment.
- Care for old: On the other hand, a rise in life expectancy has brought with it a policy imperative that is bound to become even more important in the coming decades. A growing population of older adults is a certainty, and it opens up prospects for employment in many new services catering to them.
- Improving Urban facilities: These require improvements, with an emphasis on access to good, affordable housing and mobility.
The Sustainable Development Goals framework provides a roadmap to this new era. But progress in poverty reduction, greater equality, better nutrition, universal education, and health care, need state support. This can become possible with strong civil society institutions. Making agriculture remunerative and keeping food prices stable is crucial to ensure nutrition for all. India is set to become the most populous nation. For its leaders, improving the quality of life for its people will be a test of political will.
source: The Hindu