Africa’s Under-18 Population to Reach 1 Billion by 2050

Africa’s Under-18 Population to Reach 1 Billion by 2050

According to Unicef, one in ten people in the world will be African as a result of a population growth that will see the number of under-18’s rise by two-thirds to almost 1 billion by 2050. The results of the findings showcase what has been described as “a massive shift in the world’s child population towards Africa” in spite of the high child-mortality rates on the continent.

High Fertility Rates

The seismic demographic shift that would see the continent’s population double in size, and about 40% of children born in the world come from Africa (rising from around 10% in 1950) has been attributed to high fertility rates and the increase in number of women of reproductive age. Of particular importance is Nigeria, which is projected to account for 10% of births globally by 2050. Africa already has more people aged under 20 than anywhere in the world.

Africa’s Population Projection according to United Nations Population Division

1950: 9%
2015: 16%
2050: 25%
2100: 39%

Implications of Rising Population Growth

Considering the current level of unemployment, poverty and underdevelopment across Africa, the projected population increase could bring about massive challenges for the continent. Therefore, efforts should be made by the various governments to make it a catalyst for change by investing more in children now. Considering the fact that children are the future of any nation, investing more in health, education and child protection could turn the tide and help the continent reap huge economic rewards in the near future.

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