According to recent UN population estimates, India has overtaken China as the world’s most populous country.
The data, which considered census figures as well as birth and death rates, reveals that India’s population has reached 1.4 billion (1,425,775,850), a figure that means China has lost its top spot for the first time since the 1950s.
The news marks a significant shift in global demographics, which could have far-reaching economic consequences.
Several factors have contributed to China’s population decline, including strict laws that were aimed at controlling the country’s explosive birthrate. One example is the one-child policy that was introduced in the 1980s, which was momentarily effective but had lasting implications.
As a result of such policies, the country now has an ageing population and a gender imbalance, with men outnumbering women by 32 million. China is currently faced with the complex task of reducing the consequences of its past policies while also shoring up birth rates.