Posts Tagged ‘Demographic Winter’

Asian Economies to Top Richest List by 2050 – Study

Agence France-Presse
2:18 am | Thursday, August 16th, 2012

A vessel loaded with cargo containers anchors along the wharf at Keppel port in Singapore on July 13, 2012. Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea are projected to be the world’s richest economies on a per capita basis by 2050, according to a survey by property giant Knight Frank and Citi Private Bank, reported in Singapore media on Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2012. AFP PHOTO / ROSLAN RAHMAN

SINGAPORE—Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea are projected to be the world’s richest economies on a per capita basis by 2050 as the region’s rapid growth boosts wealth creation, a study showed.

The survey by property giant Knight Frank and Citi Private Bank, reported in Singapore media Wednesday, also showed multimillionaires in Asia will continue to outnumber those in North America and Western Europe by 2050.

Singapore topped the list in 2010 and is expected to keep the top spot in 2050, when the city-state’s gross domestic product (GDP) per capita would reach $137,710.

It will be trailed by Hong Kong ($116,639), Taiwan ($114,093) and South Korea ($107,752) with the United States coming in fifth place, falling from third place in 2010.

Singapore’s 2010 GDP per capita stood at $56,532, while Hong Kong ($45,301) – the only other Asian economy in the top 10 that year – was in fourth place.

Taiwan and South Korea were not even in the top 10 in 2010.
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Arguments Contra and Pro RH Bill

STAR SCIENCE By Ernesto M. Pernia, Ph.D. (The Philippine Star) Updated September 22, 2011 12:00 AM

While the Reproductive Health (RH) bill failed to make the hurdle during previous session of the 14th Congress, it seems to be making some headway in the current session owing to a more favorable disposition of the new national leadership. Still, public debate remains heated. It’s time to take stock of the arguments contra and pro RH (or Responsible Parenthood) bill.

Those opposed to the bill assert that the Philippines does not have a population problem and that the focus of public policy should instead be on the corruption problem. They argue that a large population resulting from rapid population growth is, in fact, good for the economy. They add that attempts to slow population growth are ill-advised as they would only hasten the onset of the “demographic winter” or the problem of ageing currently experienced by the advanced countries in Europe. Moreover, the Catholic Church hierarchy and conservative religious groups assert that the RH bill is pro-abortion and is thus anti-life. This is because, in their view, modern contraceptives — which the RH bill proposes to make available along with the traditional methods (including “natural family planning”) — are abortifacient.

Those in favor of the bill cite the conventional argument that slower population growth facilitates economic growth, poverty reduction, and preservation of the environment, as clearly shown by the experience of the other East and Southeast Asian countries. Economic growth is facilitated by higher private and public savings — owing to slower growth of the youth dependents — required for investment in human capital (i.e., spending on education and health per person) and infrastructure. Slower population growth combined with faster economic growth leads to significant poverty reduction, human development, and lower inequality. And slower population growth lessens the stress on the environment.

Furthermore, the pro-RH bill advocates invoke household survey data showing that women — poor women in particular — are having more children than they want and can adequately provide for. Poor women are unable to achieve their desired number of children due to lack of access to affordable modern and effective family planning methods. Unintended or mistimed pregnancies result in most of about 560,000 induced and illegal abortions annually, such that improved access to modern and effective contraceptive methods could substantially reduce such illegal abortions. This implies that, contrary to the claim of those who oppose the RH bill, it is in fact anti-abortion and is pro-life. Indeed, the bill expressly prohibits abortion.
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(Book) Population and Poverty:The Real Score

(Excerpts from the book)

The public debate on the population issue – long settled in most of the developing world– remains unresolved in the Philippines. We aim in this paper to contribute to the debate,in particular to highlight the role the government must play to face up to thisdevelopment challenge.

On one extreme, there are those who say that there is no population problem and, hence, that there is nothing the government needs to do about it. On the other, some view population growth as the principal cause of poverty that would justify the government resorting to draconian and coercive measures to deal with the problem (e.g., denial of basic services and subsidies to families with more than two children).

We consider these extreme views and arrive at what we think is a balanced, more reasoned and, hopefully, more widely acceptable position. Our review of the extensiveliterature and our analysis of relevant empirical data lead us to the following key messages:

Poverty is a complex phenomenon, and many factors are responsible for it. Rapid population growth alone cannot explain poverty. Bad governance, high wealth and income inequality and weak economic growth are the main causes. But rapid population growth and high fertility rates, especially among the poor, do exacerbate poverty and make it harder for the government to address it. The government’s target of reducing poverty incidence to 20% or lower by 2010 would not be feasible, given historical growth rates of population and the economy.
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