Age Distribution of a Zero-Growth Population: Implications for China


It is generally accepted that zero-growth population would be the long-term destiny of any population. China’s population is expected to reach 1.4 billion with zero-growth around 2030, if the low fertility policy continues up to then. Demographic dynamics indicate that the age composition of a steady zero-growth society would asymptotically approach the population mix of today’s many developed countries. Here we present a brief analysis and some insights into the age composition of a zero-growth society and the connectedness between total fertility rate, net reproduction rate and replacement level of fertility. Other formulas useful for demographic studies are also provided to further the analysis. Our results reveal that the age composition of China’s population in 2050 would be similar to those of some developed countries today. We argue that the misgivings about “population aging” or the fear of a “winter of humanity” in China stem from rather oversimplified estimations.

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Song, J. (2013). Age Distribution of a Zero-Growth Population: Implications for China. Chinese Studies, 2, 77-83. doi: 10.4236/chnstd.2013.22011.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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