Global Population Trends

September 2022

Ageing, urbanisation and migration continue to be major factors shaping global population. The number of seniors around the world kept expanding in 2021 and is expected to grow further up till 2040. The number of small children is systematically falling globally due to decreasing fertility rates, later marriages and other factors influencing the change in lifestyles. Containment of the pandemics, gradual lift of the restrictions and political unrest encourage higher mobility and migration of pe

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Key Findings

The global population is predicted to surpass nine billion by 2040

Global population is expected to continue growing over the next decades, although the pace of growth will slow. The Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific regions will dominate population growth over 2021-2040. 88% of the global population is set to be concentrated in developing countries by 2040, shifting global consumer influence away from developed countries.

Urbanisation to create both opportunities and challenges

Urbanisation will be the major driver of consumption and lifestyle trends, due to the higher average purchasing power and concentration of urban citizens. Among the fastest growing cities globally are forecast to be Luanda in Angola and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, both of which will become megacities by 2040. However, fast-growing cities will face numerous challenges related to housing, sanitation, infrastructure and pollution.

Birth rates continue to decline globally

The global COVID-19 pandemic and consequent economic downturn has exacerbated the decline in birth rates. While this may be good news for the environment, low fertility rates could dampen economic growth due to labour shortages, weaker consumer demand and lower productivity.

Senior population to rise at the fastest pace compared to other age cohorts

Population ageing challenges are expected to persist globally. The sheer growth of the population aged 65+, coupled with low birth rates, will challenge the social welfare systems of global economies. At the same time, however, there will be opportunities to provide tailored products and services for the elderly in areas such as healthcare and leisure.


Key findings
Global population snapshot
Five key population trends
Areas of opportunity

Population today

Global population in 2021: Summary
Population in Middle East and Africa region grows the fastest
Seniors increasing their share of population composition
Traffic congestion defines rapidly urbanising areas
Net migration rebounds due to successful taming of the pandemic

Global outlook

Global population to increase by more than one billion, but there are challenges
Urban population in Middle East and Africa to grow at the fastest pace by 2040
By 2040, Gen Alpha will gain more importance in shaping consumption trends
Global birth rates are forecast to keep declining over the next two decades
Global life expectancy to reach 75 years in 2033, yet health issues are on the rise

Top five population trends

Top population trends for economies, businesses and consumers
Living longer, but not better: Poor health elevates expenditure on health and wellness
Memore : Food ingredients to support cognitive health
Urban sprawl: Fast-paced expansion of global cities changes urban development priorities
The Point project in Utah to be the first true 15-minute city in the US
Pandemic baby bust: Health and financial concerns reflected in missing births
Gigo Taiwan: Creating the very first official certification for elderly-targeted toys
The great migration: International migration continues to rise globally
Online grocery store Weee to provide a greater selection of ethnic food in the US
Welcoming diversity: Consumers increasingly value diversity and authenticity
Pfaff Harley-Davidson creates Tough Turban that combines safety and culture
Five key population trends

Rankings of key indicators

Total population
Population aged 0-14 years
Population aged 15-64 years
Population aged 65+ years
Median age of population
Urban population
Population density
Net migration
Life expectancy at birth


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