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Presentation

2nd Revision

Introduction

 
Data - Population
The Impact of Fertility Assumptions on Total Population Projections in China
This table compares the 1994 and 1998 revisions of the Low Variant UN Population Projections

Fertility Estimate / Projection

Population Estimate / Projection

Period

1994
Revision

1998
Revision

Difference

Year

1994
Revision

1998
Revision

Difference

       

1950

554,760

554,760

0

1950-55

6.11

6.22

0.11

1955

609,005

609,005

0

1955-60

5.48

5.59

0.11

1960

657,492

657,492

0

1960-65

5.61

5.72

0.11

1965

729,191

729,191

0

1965-70

5.94

6.06

0.12

1970

830,675

830,675

0

1970-75

4.76

4.86

0.10

1975

927,808

927,808

0

1975-80

3.26

3.32

0.06

1980

998,877

998,877

0

1980-85

2.50

2.55

0.05

1985

1,070,175

1,070,175

0

1985-90

2.41

2.46

0.05

1990

1,155,305

1,155,305

0

1990-95

1.85

1.92

0.07

1995

1,216,089

1,220,516

4,427

1995-00

1.70

1.77

0.07

2000

1,265,889

1,276,213

10,324

2000-05

1.60

1.65

0.05

2005

1,301,231

1,315,885

14,654

2005-10

1.50

1.55

0.05

2010

1,326,814

1,345,998

19,184

2010-15

1.50

1.5

0.00

2015

1,348,339

1,370,923

22,584

2015-20

1.50

1.5

0.00

2020

1,361,692

1,388,265

26,573

2020-25

1.50

1.5

0.00

2025

1,363,000

1,394,280

31,280

2025-30

1.50

1.5

0.00

2030

1,350,678

1,386,891

36,213

2030-35

1.50

1.5

0.00

2035

1,325,808

1,367,471

41,663

2035-40

1.50

1.5

0.00

2040

1,292,860

1,338,371

45,511

2040-45

1.50

1.5

0.00

2045

1,250,899

1,298,948

48,049

2045-50

1.50

1.5

0.00

2050

1,199,919

1,250,100

50,181

Source: United Nations (1995): World Population Prospects. The 1994 Revision. New York; United Nations (1999): World Population Prospects. The 1998 Revision. New York (both from data on diskettes)
These low variant population projections for China from the United Nations Population Division can be used to demonstrate that even very small variations in fertility assumptions have a huge impact on total population projections when the initial population is very large.
Both the 1994 and the 1998 revision of the UN Population Projections use for 1990 an initial population of 1.155 billion. With the fertility assumptions from the 1994 revision the Chinese population was projected to increase to a little less than 1.2 billion people; with the only slightly modified fertility assumptions from the 1998 revision, the population was projected to increase to more than 1.25 billion. Please note that the projected difference of 50.2 million people is only due to the minimal difference in fertility assumptions of 0.07 children per woman (between 1990 and 2000) and 0.05 children per woman between 2000 and 2010. Of course, no one is able to predict China's future Total Fertility Rate with a two-digit accuracy. In other words, we have to expect that China's total population in 2050 can be only predicted with an error range of at least 50 to 100 million people. 
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Revision 2.0 (First revision published in 1999)  - Copyright 2011 by Gerhard K. Heilig. All rights reserved. (First revision: Copyright 1999 by IIASA.)