Pakistan must invest more to slow population growth: UN

Published: November 14, 2012
UNFPA Country Representative Rabbi Royan launches UNFPA’s report “The State of World Population 2012” on Wednesday. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID/EXPRESS TRIBUNE

UNFPA Country Representative Rabbi Royan launches UNFPA’s report “The State of World Population 2012” on Wednesday. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD JAVAID/EXPRESS TRIBUNE

ISLAMABAD: A third of Pakistanis have no access to birth control, a senior UN official said on Wednesday, as he urged the country to allocate more resources to family planning to slow rapid population growth.

Pakistan’s population is growing by 2.05 per cent a year and has reached the 180 million mark, making it the sixth most populous country in the world, Rabbi Royan, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) chief in Pakistan said.

Many couples who want to have fewer children have no access to contraceptives or family planning advice, he said, with the unmet need for birth control running at 33 per cent.

“It is important that provincial and federal authorities demonstrate their full commitment through sustained and prioritised allocation of additional resources to family planning services and commodities,” Royan said.

The issue of family planning was “extremely relevant” to Pakistan as the fertility rate remains very high as every mother on average gives birth to four children, he added.

This year’s global report from UNFPA focuses on the theme: “By Choice, Not by Chance: Family Planning, Human Rights and Development.”

“The report shows clearly that family planning delivers immeasurable rewards to women, families, and communities around the world,” said Royan.

Contraceptive prevalence has increased globally by just 0.1 per cent per year over the last few years, according to the report.

Pakistan had its last head count in 1998, which put the population at 132 million, and the government is working on a new population and housing census, according to the Population Census Organisation website.

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Reader Comments (12)

  • Dr.A. K.Tewari
    Nov 14, 2012 - 8:31PM

    Ulema may blame UN for her anti Islamic advice but Pakistan will have to move away from such Islam to ensure her survival .


  • Jat
    Nov 14, 2012 - 8:31PM

    Pakistan must continue to invest more in population to slow growth. After all Pakistan’s biggest and most important export is manpower based. More man, more power results in more explosive growth. This will surely cause Pakistan to shoot high in the eyes of the world.


  • Muhammed Usama Aziz
    Nov 14, 2012 - 8:47PM

    Its not Pakistan, but world should move from this economic system based on interest which is the reason of recession and downfall of economies around the world!


  • A J Khan
    Nov 14, 2012 - 9:01PM

    It is not about religon,nor is it about lack of resources, but it is about use of the available resources and swindling of available resources.
    During financial year 2010 -2011 not a single tablet was provided by the Population Welfare department Balochistan at any of its outlets. May be they had spent millions on paper. Can media or some official check this.


  • Raj - USA
    Nov 14, 2012 - 9:21PM

    Only IK has the solution. He shall end load shedding in 9 days and you shall see population growth declining in 9 months.

    On a serious note, many social evils are directly connected with high rate of population growth. You have less kids, you shall care more for them. If you have countless, their life becomes not so precious and it does not bother the parents that much even if they become suicide bombers or polio victims. You also loose track of what your kids are doing. They become more like orphans. The health of mothers are also badly affected.


  • Basit
    Nov 14, 2012 - 9:28PM

    @AJ Khan: Balochistan is under-populated and Government should encourage the people of Balochistan to increase their population, they might get budget allocation on the basis population.


  • indian
    Nov 14, 2012 - 9:38PM

    no no…………pakistan must increase population at high rate in order to increase islamisation of south asia and keep the hindus at bay…..


  • nassi
    Nov 15, 2012 - 12:13AM

    Much as I would like to see rapid population growth brought under control in Pakistan, I am too optimistic about it. What is happening in Karachi is basically a result of imbalance between city’s vast population and its inadequate recourses. If this is anything to go by, in future this form of violent and brutal competition for recourses is likely to spread to other heavily populated areas of Pakistan.


  • gp65
    Nov 15, 2012 - 6:47AM

    Clearly providing access to contraception to people is the most obvious and direct step.

    The one thing that India’s planners have noted is that women’s literacy makes a very significant difference. The total fertility rate (TFR) for illiterate women is 3.4 which is about 35% higher than that of literate women which is 2.2 (all-India TFR as of 2010 is 2.5). 2.1 is the magic number for TFR because that is the prerequisite for population stabilization to start (although the number is approximate and can vary from country to country depending on life expectancy, infant mortality, median age for first child etc).

    Even in Bihar, the state with the worst overall TFR of 3.7, women who are educated up to Class X or beyond have a TFR of 2.0 or less. On the other hand, even in Maharashtra, which has an overall TFR of 1.9, women who had no education had a TFR of 6.0.

    Ofcourse Bangladesh has done an even better job than India in terms of bringing down its TFR. In 1975 its TFR was higher than India and now it is marginally lower at 2.3 (2011 survey).


  • Nov 15, 2012 - 9:21AM

    @Muhammed Usama Aziz:
    “Its not Pakistan, but world should move from this economic system based on interest which is the reason of recession and downfall of economies around the world! “

    Another typical brain with no grey matter , This is because of the complete submission developed due to the environment (aamily, schools, peers and the society)which forbids questioning. . Such minds can forcefully say anything ( based on their belief ) including the concept of “interest” and declaring it the ill of economy without giving any logic/ rationale in support of their statements. and also the reason for the downfall of the economies of the world.
    In economics , interest is the compensation or fee paid by the borrower for the use of asset (money) and also the sacrifice of the lender for the opportunity.
    Tvaries from he rate of interest / the amount of compensation depends upon the amount of risk involved therein and the demand & supply factor.. the rate % of interest in the world varies from
    1% to 6% in the west and 6 to 15 % else where. The problem is not in the concept of interest rather it is with its abuse.


  • Mian Jawad Gilani
    Nov 15, 2012 - 1:50PM


    Does not work unless the man is educated and employable. Otherwise you get Taliban.

    Please read “Demographic Dividend or Threat” by Dr. Durre Nayab from PIDE.


  • Muhammed Usama Aziz
    Nov 18, 2012 - 12:30AM

    @p r sharma:
    A typical brain that has Islamphobia. It is actually the concept of devalue of currency which is the root of the problem. When currency is devalued, interest increases and this cycle continues.


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