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WASHINGTON: The world’s population, whose current rate of increase is 132 people a minute, is expected to reach 7,000 million or more by the year 2000, according to figures just released here [March 11].

The Population Reference Bureau, a private organisation, estimated the world’s population as of Jan 1, 1968 as 3,443 million, based on figures provided by the United Nations Demographic Yearbook. The 4,000 million mark is expected to be reached by 1969, the Bureau said, and world population will be 5,000 million by 1983. The Bureau estimated that 118 million babies will be born during this year, while 49 million people will die.

The Bureau’s report also included these findings:

Nearly one-third of the world’s population is under 15 years of age.

Seven countries — India, USSR, USA, Pakistan, Indonesia, Japan and China — account for 58 per cent of the world’s population. If the world’s countries are divided into two groups — the “haves” and the “have nots” — only about one-third of the total population would be found to live in the “have” nations. — Agency

Published in Dawn, March 12th, 2018