A report released by the United Nations Population. Fund says that the world population will top 6 billion in October 1999 and it will rise to about 8.9 billion by 2,050. The report says that population growth dropped from 2.4% to 1.3% in the past 30 years but it warned that cumulative effects of poverty, diseases, environmental change and shrinking resources have the potential to wipe out the benefits of lower birth rates. While birth rates declined in Europe, North American and Japan the growth is occurring in poor upprepared regions such as Africa, Latin America and in parts of Asia. Of the 4.8 billion people in developing countries nearly three-fifths lacked basis sanitation and a fifth has no access to modern health services. 20% to 25% of couples in developing countries did not have access to contraceptives and more research and investment is needed to discover new birth control methods to prevent sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy. The concerned agencies estimate that more than 585,000 women die in the world's poorest economics each year and at least 7 million suffer infection or injury as a result of pregnancy. Upto half of 175 million pregnancies each year are unwanted or ill-timed despite an increase in contraceptive use.
The report says that United States is the only industrialised country where big population increases are projected, largely as a result of immigration.