It is well known that the world populations increasing but at different rates do depend on innumerable factors that are all fundamentally tied to their fast and / or slowish development levels. This proposed article dated May 3rd, 2018, focused on mostly the least populated region of the Middle East, i.e. the Gulf countries. Outside of these, Lebanon and Jordan, 2 relatively small Middle Eastern countries of which the combined populations could be lower than that of Lagos’ metropolitan area in terms of sheer numbers as well as in growth rates.

All these populations could nevertheless have such potentialities soon that it may be best to get to know them as early as practicable.

So, analysing by analogy these 2 parts of the world’s demographic dynamics could perhaps reveal the radically different situation between developed and developing countries.

It is to be noted that as we go through the on-going change due to technological advancement, the developed world would be bound to go for more renewables whereas the developing staying on with the use of the fossil type of energy procurement. Would therefore the world be divided no longer in 3 worlds but rather into 2 compartments.  Anyway here is the article as elaborated by the WEF’s Callum Brodie, Formative Content.

Why the world’s fastest-growing populations are in the Middle East and Africa  

Africa and the Middle East were home to the world’s fastest growing populations between 2010–2015. Image: REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

By 2050 the Middle East and Africa will be home to around 3.4 billion people — this is likely to be more than the populations of China and India combined. Such an unprecedented boom will present challenges as well as opportunities for the international community.

The United Nations’ World Population Prospects 2017 report shows that the world’s fastest-growing populations from 2010 to 2015 were in Middle Eastern and African countries.

The following nations have experienced the most accelerated rate of population growth:

Image: World Population Prospects 2017

Unprecedented growth

Whereas growth in other populous regions, such as Europe, China and the Americas, has stalled in recent years, in Africa and the Middle East the numbers continue to increase at a rapid rate.

To put this into perspective, Africa’s population is expected to double to 2 billion by 2050. By 2100 its population could easily have doubled again. If that happens, at least four billion of the world’s 11 billion people will be African.

This unprecedented growth is largely due to the fact that infant mortality rates are down significantly and life expectancy has improved. Birth rates remain high at about five children per woman.

Meanwhile, in the Middle East, a combination of a rapidly increasing youth population and an influx of migrant workers has propelled countries such as Kuwait and Oman into the top 10 fastest-growing populations.

Topping that list is Qatar, which experienced population growth of almost 7% in the five years from 2010 to 2015. However, unlike most of the other countries on the list, Qatar’s growth is mainly down to its ambitions to make a mark on the world stage.

Having won the right to host the 2022 soccer World Cup, Qatar has embarked on some significant construction projects that have required a heavy reliance on migrant labour. Of Qatar’s estimated population of 2.57 million, 90% are migrant workers.

Image: Reuters

Challenges and opportunities

There are pros and cons associated with population growth. Some are more obvious than others.

The global population has more than tripled since the UN was created in 1945. The main knock-on effect of this is the substantially increased demand on shared resources.

Environmental problems — from climate change to species loss to overzealous resource extraction — are either caused or exacerbated by population growth. Then there are the less obvious side effects to consider: Air traffic volumes are forecast to double within the next 20 years.

In certain parts of the world ageing populations are putting a strain on healthcare capacity and economic growth. China, a country that for decades has enforced a one-child only policy, is now exploring financial incentives for couples who have a second child.

Yet there are also myriad opportunities for communities and companies to stand out from the rapidly-growing crowd.

In the Middle East, a larger youth population has coincided with greater social empowerment. Women often married young and rarely worked outside the home. Now, more girls are attending school and more women are entering the labour force. Couples are waiting longer to marry and are having fewer children.

Meanwhile, the challenges created by a burgeoning population will provide compelling investment opportunities for socially-engaged organizations.

Image: REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed


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