Saturday, August 25, 2007

The world is getting older and older

The UN report (World Population Ageing 2007) has just been published. If you live in Europe and want a copy then you can order one from here.

For free the UN provides a load of tables and the Exec Summary.

It contains a lot of terrifying stuff. Here are few quotes.
Population ageing is unprecedented, a process without parallel in the history of humanity. A population ages when increases in the proportion of older persons (that is, those aged 60 years or over) are accompanied by reductions in the proportion of children (persons under age 15) and then by declines in the proportions of persons in the working ages (15 to 59). This leads to the big reduction in the support ratio.

In 2000, the population aged 60 years or over numbered 600 million, triple the number present in 1950. In 2006, the number of older persons had surpassed 700 million. By 2050, 2 billion older persons are projected to be alive, implying that their number will once again triple over a span of 50 years.

Globally the population of older persons is growing at a rate of 2.6 per cent per year, considerably faster than the population as a whole which is increasing at 1.1 per cent annually.

Today the median age for the world is 28 years, that is, half the world’s population is below that age and the other half is above it. The country with the youngest population is Uganda, with a median age of 15 years, and the oldest is Japan, with a median age of 43 years. Over the next four decades, the world’s median age will likely increase by ten years, to reach 38 years in 2050.
Get the picture? The world is ageing big time! Dick Stroud

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