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Nigeria to overtake the US? China dropping like a rock?

I know; nobody cranks out sensational headlines like the Snitz. Interesting factoid, while Nigeria currently has about 2/3rds of our population (in a considerably smaller landmass) their COVID death rate is a fraction of ours (even though their population is largely unvaccinated).

China's in big trouble as over 1/3rd of its population will soon by over 65. Not enough folks of working age to support the growing "old farts" cohort.

China’s National Bureau of Statistics announced that the nation’s population dropped by ~850k in 2022, the first annual decline since 1961 when the country endured its great famine.

While it's not completely unexpected, China’s birthrate has been falling for the last 6 years, the drop means that the country’s population has peaked significantly sooner than experts anticipated and could point to serious issues for the world’s second-largest economy.

Shifting sands

According to United Nations estimates from 2022, India is set to overtake China as the world’s most populous nation this year, though some analysts believe the China announcement suggests that the switch could have happened already. It’s clear too that, from current rates, the chasm will only extend over time, with India set to end the century with nearly double the population of China.

From the planet's perspective, fewer humans competing for finite resources is good news, though many people — Elon Musk included — believe population collapse could become a major issue over the rest of the 21st century.

With fewer births, China's population pyramid is set to invert, leading to a “top-heavy” demographic, in which a small base of working-age citizens have to support an increasingly large elderly population. That's something Japan — and a number of countries in Europe — have dealt with for years, and is likely to weigh on China's economic growth, which, per data out today, is already slowing.

Go deeper: Use the UN’s Data Portal to see the full forecasts, country by country.

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