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PRESS RELEASE Launch of Population Projections Report

PRESS RELEASE

Launch of Population Projections Report

Hotel Taj Tashi, Thimphu

11 January 2019

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The H.E Lyonchen Dr. Lotay Tshering, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of Bhutan, launched the population projection reports (2017-2047) on 11 January 2019.

The population projections (2017-2047), which is one of the post census technical report was published by the National Statistics Bureau with technical and financial assistance from the UNFPA, Bhutan. The report is prepared at two different levels: “National level” and “Sub-National (Dzongkhag) level”. The national level report spans for a period of thirty years (2017-2047) while the Dzongkhag level is for ten years.  The population projection was done basically to provide data for the purposes of policy formulation, socio-economic planning, service delivery, and indicators for measuring progress towards the achievement of key government targets.

 

The population projections report presents the population of Bhutan between 2017 and 2047 by sex and different age groups. It is projected that population of Bhutan will continue to grow but at a slower pace. The population is projected to reach 883,866 persons by 2047, staying below the one million mark.

 

Bhutan has been experiencing steep fertility decline in the recent past and it is expected to remain below replacement level of 2.1 (number of children per woman during her entire reproductive age) in the foreseeable future. Due to the declining fertility rates, the birth rate will decline substantially to 11 births per 1000 population and the annual growth rate will fall from 0.99 % in 2017 to 0.27 % in 2047.

 

Mortality rate is expected to fall but due to the ageing population, the crude death rate is going to maintain at around the same level as in 2017 with marginal increase to about 8 deaths per 1000 population by 2047.

 

With the ageing of population, the age structure of the population is projected to change notably overtime. The share of population in the ages 0-14 years (children) will fall considerably from 26% to 17%, and that of ages 65+ years (elderly) will increase from 6% to 13% during the projection period. Similarly, the share of population in the ages 15-64 years (working age) rise crossing 70% in mid 2020s implying a low dependency ratio of close to 40, and maintaining at that level till mid 2040s. This provides Bhutan a high demographic dividend for some time.

 

The urbanization in Bhutan is happening at a moderate pace and by 2047; it is projected that more than half of the total population (56.8%) will reside in urban areas. The population growth is not expected to be uniform across all Dzongkhags.   The projection report reveals that about 30% of the total population which is about 260,000 persons will reside in Thimphu Dzongkhag by 2047. No other Dzongkhags will have population more than 100,000 persons although some Dzongkhags could have population exceeding 50,000 persons.

 

It is evident from the projections report that Bhutan is not going to face the prospects of rapid population growth. On the contrary, due to sharp decline in the fertility rates, the number of babies born annually is going to decrease and subsequently, the population in the school going age would decline gradually calling for a policy shift in the education system.

Likewise, with ageing of population, the median age is projected to increase to 40 years by 2047 from 26.9 in 2017 (meaning half of the population in Bhutan is going to be above 40 years and the other half younger), which would mean increased Non-Communicable and degenerative diseases, giving more pressure on health and other social services.

National Statistics Bureau

Thimphu

Jan 14, 2019    News    sonam    297 views