Pakistan could become world’s fourth most populous country

Published: October 27, 2011
Population growth rate attributed to low prevalence of contraceptives. PHOTO: QAZI USMAN/FILE

Population growth rate attributed to low prevalence of contraceptives. PHOTO: QAZI USMAN/FILE

Population growth rate attributed to low prevalence of contraceptives. PHOTO: QAZI USMAN/FILE High population growth rate from 32.5 million to 177 million, during 1947 to 2011 is the highest population growth rate at 2.03% amongst the SAARC countries.
Population Welfare Programme could establish only 3200 service delivery centers throughout the county, which are insufficient to cater to the needs of its 177 million population. 
NEED to involve all the 14000 service outlets of Health Departments and 90,000 Lady Health Workers for providing Reproductive Health and Family Planning Services. 

It is projected that Pakistan would become the world’s 4th most populous country in 2050 with a population of nearly 335 million
However, by 2005, it had become the world’s 6th most populous country with 166 million people. 
Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world and has the lowest (30%) CPR
At 1950 Pakistan had around 40 million people and it was the world’s 13th largest country in terms of population. 

With the world’s population reaching seven billion on October 31, UN officials have stated that, by 2050, Pakistan is going to be the fourth most populous country in the world.

Resident Coordinator of United Nations Pakistan Timo Pakkala said that although Pakistan was among the first countries in Asia that initiated a family planning programme, it has experienced a high population growth rate – 32.5 million to 177 million during 1947 to 2011.

Speaking at the launching ceremony of the State of World Population 2011 report by the United Nations Population Fund (UNPF), Pakkala informed that in 1950 Pakistan had around 40 million people and was the world’s 13th largest country in terms of population. However, by 2005, it had become the world’s sixth most populous country with 166 million people.

It is now projected that Pak­­­istan could become
the world’s fourth most populous country in 2050 with a population of nearly 335 million.

Planning and Development Division Acting Secretary Ch Muhammad Azam said that amongst the SAARC countries Pakistan has the lowest Contraceptive prevalence rate (CPR) at 30% and highest population growth rate at 2.03%. This has resulted in an annual net addition of 3.6 million people to its population, which will double in next 34 years, he added.

He further said at the ceremony that the Population Welfare Programme could establish only 3,200 service delivery centres throughout the county, which are insufficient to cater to the needs of its population of 177 million.

Azam informed the audience that in post-18th amendment, the functions of the defunct Ministry of Population Welfare, such as, planning, coordination of national policy on population, population projections, research and coordination, and administration of  four institutions have been transferred to the Planning and Development division.

The Population Welfare Programme has been devolved to the provinces.

“Today we have to resolve  that in the future we will make all efforts to ensure provision of reproductive health and family planning services to clients at their doorsteps in every nook and corner of the country,” said Azam.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 27th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (19)

  • maz3tt
    Oct 27, 2011 - 10:32AM

    Well with these resources and people sky is the limit for us but………….


  • Eeman
    Oct 27, 2011 - 11:00AM

    Yeah, but by then — we’d be having India and Afghanistan as a part of Pakistan after fighting and subsequently winning Gazwa-e-Hind. So it doesn’t matter how many kids are malnourished and have no clothes and shoes to wear. It’s the Army of God.Recommend

  • rk singh
    Oct 27, 2011 - 11:40AM

    what about bangladesh?


  • Pasha
    Oct 27, 2011 - 11:48AM

    This is a valuable human resource that Pakistan if properly plan can benefit from, provide educated and training to human resources and export them so that money is pumped back to the country, be positive and look forward to use the opportunity.

    EU countries and many others are facing population decline, our growth can fill their deficit but we need to invest in human capital!

    Start planning for the future…


  • Oct 27, 2011 - 11:49AM

    Lets look at bastion of population control and embodiment of Malthus utopia, China.

    (AP) China will have 30 million more
    men of marriageable age than women in
    less than 15 years as a gender
    imbalance resulting from the country’s
    tough one-child policy becomes more
    pronounced, state media reported

    Do we want to take this path?


  • THA
    Oct 27, 2011 - 12:11PM

    keep your birth rate down for god’s sake….abhi pani nai milta, us waqt kaisay milay ga????
    stop this stupid bickering of “Allah sab de ga” and start planning your families else the best you can hope for i poverty: believe me that’ll be better than death by starvation or of thirst and diseases


  • faraz
    Oct 27, 2011 - 1:07PM

    At this high birth rate and diminishing water reserves, there would be immense food shortages


  • palash
    Oct 27, 2011 - 2:08PM

    @Singh, In 1971 Bangladesh had a total population of 65 million whereas Pakistan had only 60 million.According to UNFPA Bangladesh current population stand close to be 150 million and for Pakistan its just above 170 million.Bangladesh current population growth rate is 1.27% whereas Pakistan has 2.03%,considering current trend of world food production where countries like Russia, Brazil, Australia transforming their traditional crop field to produce bio-fuel,put major grain importing countries like Bangladesh at the edge of severe food crisis.Although Bangladesh did well in terms of population control and child mortality rate compare to her neighbor Pakistan and India Its really unfortunate and disastrous situation for a tiny country like Bangladedsh to have 150 million which is at least 6 times smaller than Pakistan.


  • Geelani
    Oct 27, 2011 - 2:12PM

    Awesome. Makes me so happy that even when Pakistan is staring disaster in the face, my fellow countrymen can find ways of keeping themselves amused. Pakistan Zindabad.


  • Ahmad
    Oct 27, 2011 - 2:20PM


    Allah tu Sab ko RIZQ denay wala hai
    no DOUBT

    Problems arise when we are unable to manage the resources in proper manner
    Elite class eat dinners worth 10,000/head , while poors dont have 10 Rs to get a ROTIRecommend

  • Khan
    Oct 27, 2011 - 4:08PM

    Do you even understand the problem high population growth is creating for us .. more population means more demand for food, more demand for jobs, more stress on hospitals, schools, more demand for cloths and every single thing that is being used every day by every single person. How are we going to address this ? every year the prices will keep going more and more higher due to its demand .. We won’t be able to educated them as government doesn’t have much resources … It will push society towards destruction as people become illiterate they will do more crime when they don’t have enough food or jobs due to its high demand. You are more worried about those men getting married and having more kids had they planned about this situation years ago China would not have had these 30 million men at first place.
    During first govt of PPP during 1988-1990 they used to have population control advertisements on tv .. after that I have never seen any govt doing anything about this problem.


  • bilal
    Oct 27, 2011 - 4:13PM

    good ,more ppl ,more riots and after 2100 alas 4 new republicans !!


  • Khan
    Oct 27, 2011 - 4:21PM

    You mean to say diminishing resources?
    Does any one here knows why and how Israel is such important for the rest of the world and how they influence American policy?
    Just Google all the big brands in the world and most of them are owned by them .. Their population is in millions not hundreds of millions like us .. Their total population around the world is equal to the population of Karachi and only 57 lacs are living in Israel.
    Less population means they can give better education to their children .. Their millionaires around the world are sponsoring poor kids for studying in LSE, Oxford, Harvard, Yale and Cambridge, who ends up working on high posts in multinational organizations thus that single student is proffered over hundreds because of their qualifications and they also befriends other people in those top universities who in future end up on influential governments and organizations.


  • Ashraf
    Oct 27, 2011 - 5:25PM

    I am so proud of Pakistan !!


  • Uzair
    Oct 27, 2011 - 7:00PM


    The gender imbalance is always there whether there is population control or not. The problem with us third world countries is that we prefer boys to girls, and hence there is female infanticide aka abortions carried out in India China etc.

    Population control is still necessary, otherwise no Pakistani has a future.


  • Oct 28, 2011 - 8:16AM

    Technically you can fit entire world population with Manhattan density into land area size of Texas.

    Water problem is due to water privatization so if corporations control the water they will sell for profit not for free.

    Allah has given lot of resources but bankers and their owned corporations are making resource available only if they can make windfall profit.

    In China 30 million is due to one child policy, population control.

    More human beings are not problem, we need better investment in people welfare not privatization.


  • Oct 28, 2011 - 8:18AM

    Yes in Pakistan we dont have this problem in one child China it is. It is due to population control.


  • Uzair
    Oct 28, 2011 - 12:47PM

    @Moise: And is the solution to remove discrimination against girls? Or is it keep breeding like rabbits and ensuring our further destruction with absolutely zero hope of a decent life for all the millions of kids added every year?


  • Nov 1, 2011 - 7:00AM

    Good luck with another policy. Looks like there is solution looking for non-existent problem of population control. If you want to use the population invest in education and technology. This planet can house well beyond 7 billion people. This dogma of population explosion is as old as Trojan Wars since its goal was to de-populate the earth. Time to ditch the Malthusian dogma and abandon the preachings of Al Gore and his doomsday Malthusian apocalypse. Use scientific and technological innovations instead of preaching dogma.


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