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  1. 1

    Keynote address.

    Moniba H

    In: The 1984 International Conference on Population: the Liberian experience, [compiled by] Liberia. Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs. Monrovia, Liberia, Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs, [1986]. 9-17.

    The purpose of the National Seminar on Population is to disseminate in Liberia the results of the World Population Conference held in Mexico City in August 1984. Due to the complex interrelationships between population and development, one must conclude that rapid population growth has an adverse effect on development. Liberia has a high level of fertility (48-51 lives births per 1000 population) and a high mortality (18 per 1000 population). One result of these population trends is that the population is youthful, about 50% of the people being under 18. This high growth potential means that in future the resources necessary to support the population will be scarcer. Secondly, increasing rural to urban migration means that the cities will have more people than they have jobs, housing, education, or health facilities to support them and that the rural areas will be depopulated with attendant lowered agricultural production and rural poverty. Education is at least partly responsible for the rural-urban migration because it alerts young people to the increasing opportunities in the towns. The current trend of increasing fertility and declining mortality means decreased economic growth and a lower standard of living. To reduce this trend people must be made aware of the necessity to lower the birth rate as well as of the means to do it. People regard a large family as a status symbol and children as a source of labor and support in old age. These attitudes will not change until people trust that the Government is committed to the socioeconomic changes that will make practicable the shift from large households with low productivity to small families with high productivity. As part of this effort, the National Committee on Population is being expanded into a National Population Commission, responsible for coordinating population programs and drafting a national population policy.
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  2. 2

    Demographic trends and their development implications.

    United Nations. Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific [ESCAP]

    In: Third Asian and Pacific Population Conference (Colombo, September 1982). Selected papers. Bangkok, Thailand, Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, 1984. 9-40. (Asian Population Studies Series No. 58)

    This report summarizes the recent demographic situation and considers prospective trends and their development implications among the 39 members and associate members of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). It presents data on the following: size, growth, and distribution of the population; age and sex structure; fertility and marriage; mortality; international migration; growth and poverty; food and nutrition; households and housing; primary health care; education; the working-age population; family planning; the elderly; and population distribution. Despite improvements in the frequency and quality of demographic data collected in recent years, big gaps continue to exist in knowledge of the demographic situation in the ESCAP region. Available evidence suggests that the population growth rate of the ESCAP region declined between 1970 and 1980, as compared with the preceding decade, but that its rate of decline was slow. Within this overall picture, there is wide variation, with the most developed countries having annual growth rates around 1% and some of the least developed countries having a figure near 3%. The main factors associated with the high growth rates are the past high levels of fertility resulting in young age structures and continuing high fertility in some countries, notably in middle south Asia. The population of countries in the ESCAP region is expected to grow from 2.5 billion in 1980, to 2.9 billion in 1990, and to 3.4 billion persons by the year 2000. This massive growth in numbers, which will be most pronounced in Middle South Asia, will occur despite projected continuing moderation in annual population growth rates. Fertility is expected to continue its downward trend, assuming a more widespread and equitable distribution of health, education, and family planning services. Mortality is expected to decline further from its current levels, where life expectancy is often at or around 50 years. In several countries, more than 10 in every 100 babies born die before their 1st birthday. The extension of primary health care services is seen as the key to reducing this figure. Rapid population growth and poverty tend to reinforce each other. Low income, lack of education, and high infant and child mortality contribute to high fertility, which in turn is associated with high rates of natural increase. High rates of natural increase feed back to depress socioeconomic development. High population growth rates and their correlates of young age structures and heavy concentrations of persons in the nonproductive ages tend to depress production and burden government expenditure with high costs for social overhead needs. Rapid population growth emerges as an important factor in the persistence of chronic undernutrition and malnutrition. It increases the magnitude of the task of improving the educational system and exacerbates the problem of substandard housing that is widely prevalent throughout Asia.
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  3. 3

    Long-range global population projections, as assessed in 1980.

    United Nations. Department of International Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division

    Population Bulletin of the United Nations. 1982; (14):17-30.

    UN medium range projections prepared in the 1980 assessment projected the population of individual countries up to the year 2025. The long range projections discussed here were prepared by projecting the population of 8 major world regions from 2025-2100. The purpose of the projection was to observe the implications of the changes from the 1978 assessment made in the 1980 medium range projections on the long range projections of the world's populations. As in previous projections, high, medium, and low variants were prepared in which fertility is assumed to be constant at the replacement level but at different times in the future. In addition, these projections contain 2 variants not previously prepared--namely, the growth and decline variants, in which the ultimate net reproduction rate is 1.05 and 0.95, respectively. In all the variants, expectation of life at birth is assumed to reach 75 years for males and 80 for females. According to the current medium variant projection, the earth's population will become stationary after 2095 at 10.2 billion persons, compared with a total of 10.5 billion projected in the 1978 assessment. The lower projection is largely attributable to a recent decline in the growth rate of several countries in South Asia which was greater than previously assumed. When the world population becomes stationary, both crude birth and death rates would be about 13/1000. In the decline variant, total population would peak at 7.7 billion in 2055, then decline gradually to 7.2 billion in 2100. The total population as projected by the growth variant would equal 14.9 billion in 2100 and would still be growing slowly. Between 1980 and 2050, 95% of the world's growth will occur in the currently less developed regions. Their share of total population will increase from 75-85% during that period. The age structure in all regions is expected to converge to 1 in which the median age is 39 years, the proportion both below age 15 and above age 64 is about 19% each, and the dependency ratio is about 60. A precise degree of accuracy cannot be specified, but the argument is made that the actual future population of the world is very likely to fall within the range of the projection variants and probably not far from the medium variant. (author's)
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