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Population growth

Population growth by country

Global population growth is the result of birth rate and death rate. The world population is rising steadily. In 2020, it reached a total population of 7.763 bn people on our planet with a growth rate of 1.0%.

With a growth rate of about 0.63% in the last decade, the United States are well in the middle of the global comparison. The last slight increase of it's growth rate was in 90s.

By contrast, the countries of Qatar and Oman (both in the Middle East) have led the field by far in recent decades. Here, growth rates of over 10% per year were achieved in some cases, although growth rates have already declined again in recent years.

Population growth 2011 - 2020

Population growth
+4% or more
-1% or less

Other periods:1960 - 20202011 - 20202001 - 20101991 - 20001981 - 1990


CountryØ Growth/yearGrowth 2011-2020
Oman5.33%57.07%
Qatar4.53%41.52%
Equatorial Guinea4.05%42.17%
Maldives3.99%42.06%
Niger3.93%41.44%
Kuwait3.63%34.80%
Uganda3.50%36.64%
Angola3.47%35.70%
Jordan3.47%33.15%
Democratic Republic of the Congo3.33%34.16%
Lebanon3.29%31.21%
Chad3.23%32.88%
Bahrain3.22%33.13%
Gabon3.20%32.12%
Burundi3.20%32.73%
Iraq3.07%30.91%
Zambia3.06%31.10%
Gambia3.03%30.76%
Tanzania3.02%30.79%
Mali3.01%30.53%
Afghanistan2.92%29.26%
Senegal2.82%28.47%
Ethiopia2.75%27.54%
Cameroon2.70%26.97%
Nigeria2.66%26.62%
Ivory Coast2.54%25.44%
Kenya2.49%24.53%
Saudi Arabia2.42%23.16%
Sudan2.41%24.04%
Ghana2.29%22.39%
Luxembourg2.20%21.62%
Egypt2.15%21.06%
Pakistan2.10%20.48%
Algeria2.00%19.61%
Israel1.91%18.66%
Macao1.90%17.88%
East Timor1.89%18.44%
Mongolia1.88%18.33%
Ecuador1.63%15.74%
Zimbabwe1.59%15.27%
New Zealand1.57%15.97%
Cambodia1.57%14.97%
Australia1.55%15.01%
Turkey1.55%14.84%
Philippines1.55%14.66%
Laos1.53%14.62%
Bolivia1.51%14.30%
South Africa1.48%14.05%
United Arab Emirates1.47%10.55%
Iceland1.43%14.87%
Malaysia1.38%12.97%
Haiti1.37%12.89%
Morocco1.33%12.59%
Iran1.31%12.54%
Indonesia1.24%11.59%
Mexico1.23%11.44%
Brunei1.19%11.12%
Colombia1.19%11.43%
Singapore1.14%9.69%
Chile1.14%10.92%
Canada1.13%10.77%
India1.12%10.37%
Bangladesh1.10%10.33%
Costa Rica1.08%9.95%
Argentina1.07%9.97%
Vietnam1.02%9.53%
Sweden0.99%9.57%
Switzerland0.99%9.15%
Principality of Monaco0.98%8.94%
Central African Republic0.97%9.30%
Norway0.96%8.61%
Ireland0.90%8.86%
Brazil0.83%7.62%
Sri Lanka0.79%7.45%
Nepal0.76%7.75%
Burma0.73%6.71%
United States0.69%6.39%
United Kingdom0.69%6.25%
Austria0.64%6.26%
Hong Kong0.63%5.80%
Belgium0.58%4.58%
China0.53%4.90%
Denmark0.50%4.68%
North Korea0.49%4.48%
Netherlands0.49%4.48%
El Salvador0.48%4.44%
South Korea0.45%3.80%
Fiji0.42%3.82%
Thailand0.38%3.38%
France0.36%3.12%
Finland0.31%2.62%
Czechia0.21%1.92%
Germany0.17%3.60%
Spain0.17%1.33%
Mauritius0.12%1.06%
Russia0.09%0.80%
North Macedonia0.09%0.68%
Italy0.03%0.12%
Montenegro0.03%0.20%
Venezuela0.01%-1.56%
Poland-0.04%-0.43%
Georgia-0.17%-0.90%
Japan-0.18%-1.56%
Bermuda-0.19%-1.02%
Hungary-0.25%-2.22%
Albania-0.26%-2.32%
Portugal-0.26%-2.47%
Ukraine-0.39%-3.44%
Greece-0.38%-3.64%
Romania-0.50%-4.42%
Serbia-0.55%-4.63%
Croatia-0.59%-5.44%
Bulgaria-0.64%-5.64%
Moldova-0.87%-8.37%
Andorra-0.88%-7.74%
Latvia-0.98%-7.73%
Lithuania-1.02%-7.70%
Bosnia and Herzegovina-1.21%-10.39%
Puerto Rico-1.24%-10.80%
Syria-1.95%-16.99%
The table shows the growth or demographic decline in 120 countries in the years 2011 to 2020. By far the strongest growth was in Oman, averaging 5.33% per year. This corresponds to a doubling of the population in less than 14 years. Overall, it is striking that these extremely high growth rates occur more frequently in small states of the Middle East and are associated with an above-average birth rate and an low mortality rate. The explanation for this lies in the very small proportion of older population strata. Older residents from 55 years are virtually non-existent and by far the largest population is between 25 and 54 years old.

Population growth Another cluster of states with increased population growth occurs in Central and South Africa. The reason is the exceptionally high birth rate, which is sometimes over 50‰ (=50 births per 1000 inhabitants and year). In 2021, 46% of Central Africa's population was under 15 years (cf. World Population Datasheet).

Worldwide, the average birth rate since the turn of the millennium is around 22‰. In addition, over the past 20 years there has been a noticeable decline in the mortality rate from around 20‰ to around 10‰ in these countries.

The opposite is clear at the other end of the table, where there are disproportionately many Eastern European countries. The death rate in these countries has been higher than the birth rate in recent decades. Also in this region, churn plays a greater role than e.g. in Western European or Asian countries.



Click on one of the country names in the table to see more information about each country.

Population growth worldwide

In the last 2000 years, the population almost continuously increased slowly and steadily. Just 350 years ago, there were only half a billion people on earth. With the "Industrial Revolution", at the end of the 18th century, an unprecedented increase in population began. Numerous technical and chemical developments such as e.g. medicine or fertilizer dropped the death rate drastically. At the same time, there was an improved supply of food for large parts of the population, which also ensured the future of the offspring and thus led to an increased birth rate. Population growth jumped from 0.3% up to 0.8%. In the following 300 years alone, the world population grew from 0.5 to over 3 billion people.

Considering the recent time, the curve flattens off again. The following graph shows the evolution of the world population from 1960 to 2020. The exponential development of the population has subsided and the graph is almost linear. There is only a minimal decline in growth rates.

At the end of 2020, there were 7.76 bn people on earth. The growth rate has been at 1.04 percent.

world population

Population pyramids: different growth by economy

The population does not rise equally in all countries. There is a striking difference when looking at the aggregated age pyramids by countries with different economic strengths. Globally, the age pyramid looks like a hive or bell with a few smaller outliers. This is due to a balanced increase in the younger generations with a birth rate of currently 17.3 ‰ and a high, late mortality. At least in relation to the entire world population.

Age pyramid world

Population pyramid Total world population 2020
Low-income countries

Population pyramid Low-income countries 2020
High-income countries

Population pyramid High-income countries 2020

A direct comparison of the age pyramids shows that poor and rich countries differ massively in their population growth. In rich countries, people reach old age much more frequently, which is due to a pronounced social system, above-average health care and also financial stability. Not only is the number of older people increasing, but the average age also differs considerably from that in less developed countries. At the same time, pressure to perform, high costs of living and a lack of evolutionary necessity are causing birth rates to fall. The majority of the population is now between 30 and 50 years old, while the under-20s are conspicuously underrepresented. In countries with a state pension system, this constellation will lead in 10-20 years to fewer and fewer people having to pay for pensions financed by taxes.

In poor countries, on the other hand, the age pyramid has a pagoda shape, i.e. a broadened pyramid with disproportionately rising younger cohorts. Due to higher and earlier mortality, the older inhabitants remain clearly in the minority. At the same time, there is often a lack of social systems and financial security for the population, which can thus be obtained only from within the family circle. Large families with many children also mean greater economic security in the future, which leads to an increased birth rate. In most poorer countries, family groups play a much more essential role than in rich countries. Children usually remain spatially bound for life and provide not only financial security but also care in old age.

Data sources

Population density by countryComparison of the global population densityA juxtaposition of the population density in 93 countries. USA comes 83th.
Comparison: LIfe expectancyAverage life expectancy by countryInternational ranking of life expectancy in 123 countries including summary by continents. Explanation of significant factors.
Comparison: average ageAverage age by countryRising average age worldwide: since 1950 alone, more than 4 years. A list by country.