Aging of World Population, Not Population Growth, is Cause for Alarm: PRI Researcher

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FRONT ROYAL, Virginia, July 21, 2006 ( — Population control organizations, in particular the United Nations, are ignoring the growing crisis of an aging world population, said Joseph D’Agostino, vice president of the Population Research Institute, in a weekly briefing today.

A report by the United Nations Population Division (UNDP), released in the fall of 2005, predicted an accelerating trend of population aging in developing nations that would surpass the rapid aging trend already underway in Western nations.

“The UNDP expects the aging, predicted to begin in earnest mid-century in Asia, the Middle East, and Latin America, to happen more dramatically than it is happening now in Europe, where the elderly already outnumber children””and this in countries which will have a fraction of the financial resources to deal with the problem,” D’Agostino wrote.

The report outlined the anticipated increase in disparity among population age groups, with the elderly increasingly dominating the population.

“The proportion of those 80 or older will go from 1.3% of the world population today to 4.3% by 2050, when those under 14″”the world’s future workers””will decline from 28.2% to 20.2%,” D’Agostino wrote. “The number of elderly dependents per 100 working-age people worldwide will go from 17 today to 37 in 2050. In less developed countries, the figures are 13 today to 34 in 2050. Can the Third World afford to support almost triple the proportion of old people?”
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