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Global Population Profile: 2002

Report Number WP/02

Introduction

A profile of global population at the dawn of the 21st century entails an exploration of some remarkable phenomena. At midyear 2002, the size of global population was about 6.2 billion people.  During 2002, the globe experienced a net increase of approximately 74 million people. This growth is due, in part, to an average level of global fertility that has couples producing more children than are needed to replace them despite precipitous fertility declines in recent years. A more important determinant of this growth, however, is the age-sex composition of the population that has a large number of women in their childbearing years relative to the size of the rest of the population. Finally, although mortality on a global level has also fallen, the anticipated effects of the HIV/AIDS pandemic are of serious concern to the populations of numerous countries.  Together, these trends create a composite profile of global population that is worthy of consideration.

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