A recent report forecasts that Delhi will overtake Tokyo as the world’s most populous city in less than twelve years, by 2028. The article also talks about how this might have a ripple effect on countries all over the world.
The report estimates that Delhi will have a population of 44 million people in 2021, and 56.4 million people by 2028, exceeding Tokyo’s 37 Million person population in 2020 according to the census 2020. (Source)
Tokyo has been topping all other cities since 1993 when it had 34 million residents, but due to Japan’s aging population and low birth rate, its population growth rate has slowed to 0%.
The report also projects that Singapore will become the third most populous city in the world. It has been ranked the world’s most developed country since 2001. The report forecasts that Singapore’s population will grow to a population of 44 million by 2028 and there will be a total of 117 million people living in Asia’s three top cities by 2028.
Tennis player and former world number one Rafael Nadal, who is from Spain said, “It’s unbelievable, it’s really incredible to think that this is going to happen in such a short period of time,” Nadal said after defeating Austria’s Jurgen Melzer in the first round at the US Open tennis tournament on Monday. “The two cities that were ahead of us at the moment, they’re obviously not in the same level. So, to be honest, it doesn’t really matter to me. Hopefully, we are going to see some big cities in India or China, whatever it is.”
According to the report by demographer Jean-Marc Fievet and his team at Insee (Statistics France) and McKinsey for a Paris-based consulting firm Global Economics Group, Tokyo will remain number one in 2024 with a population of 38.7 million. But by 2045 Tokyo’s population will decline to 30 million and will be overtaken by Delhi. The study predicts that Delhi’s population will be 40.5 million from the year 2021 to 2028.
The study also stated that Asia is gaining population faster than Europe, and will overtake it by 2150. It also said that nearly half of the world’s population growth over the next 40 years will occur in nine countries: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Indonesia, Egypt, and the U.S.
If this demographic trend continues beyond 2045 – which is entirely plausible – then cities such as Lagos (Nigeria) or Kinshasa (DR Congo) could top Tokyo by 2060 and even Beijing or Shanghai in the near future.
The report said, “Leafing through the list of megacity population forecasts, one is struck by the fact that all these estimates are purely extrapolations from current data on growth rates and age structures. Of course, they are models and we can never predict with such precision as to when a city will catch up with Shanghai or even surpass it in terms of population size. But we can be fairly certain that it will happen at least by 2030.”
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Since Tokyo topped the list in 1993, Tokyo has continued to attract migrants from neighboring areas at a rate far higher than the rest of Japan. But the report warns that it is impossible to predict if Tokyo will remain the world’s most populous city after 2021.