With more than 1.2 billion people, India has the second largest population in the world. In fact, it has 700 million more people than the European Union. At 1.19 percent, India’s population growth rate is also incredibly high. This number may not seem large, but considered next to the other top-populations of the world (The US is .81 percent, China .43), it is actually quite high. Here are more facts and figures in India:
- India’s economy is based largely on agriculture. The CIA World Factbook reports that around 50 percent of the population works in farming and other agriculturally based jobs.
- Another valuable area of India’s economy is its primary export: information technology services, software workers, and business outsourcing services. This part of India’s economy accounts for roughly 65 percent of the output, despite only employing one-third of the population.
- However, growth in the technology sector does not mirror the nation’s level of urbanization. Only about 32.7 percent of India’s population lives in urban areas. When compared with the world average of 54 percent, it is still plain that India’s agricultural base is still largely at the helm. Fortunately, India’s rate of urbanization is above the world average, indicating a slight shift towards the technological side of the economy.
- Unfortunately, India has one of the lowest life expectancy rates in the world. At 68.5 years, India ranks 164th among all nations. To give some scope to this number, China is ranked 101st at 75.5 years. Monaco ranked first, with a life expectancy of 89.5 years.
- The main contributors to low life expectancy are poor sanitation practices and extremely low health expenditures. The facts and figures in India collected in the CIA Factbook show that India spends 4.7 percent of its GDP on health. That ranks it between Madagascar and Fiji at 159th.
There is headway for an improvement to the Indian government’s tackling of health issues. The World Health Organization (WHO) Country Office for India and the Indian government worked together to create the WHO Country Cooperation Strategy— India (CCS).
The Country Cooperation Strategy’s goal is to help alleviate equity issues and improve health. It does so by using three different strategic priorities. Frst, it will support the Indian government’s involvement in global health through international health regulations and pharmaceutical improvements. Second, it will promote access to sustainable quality services for the entire population. Lastly, it will confront the spread of diseases. With a concrete plan in place, India’s quality of life will improve drastically in coming years.
— Stephen Praytor