Nigeria's population will increase by 189m between 2018 - 2050 - United Nations forecast

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By 2050, it is projected that India will have added 416 million people to its urban population, while the corresponding figures for China and Nigeria are 255 million and 189 million, respectively, according to Reuters.

By the year 2050, 68% of the world's population will live in urban areas, the United Nations said on Wednesday.

Moreover, India reportedly has the largest rural population with 893 million, followed by China with 578 million.

The UN department said by 2050, two out of every three people are likely to be living in cities or other urban centres, highlighting the need for more sustainable urban planning and public services.

"The increasing concentration of people in cities provides a way of more economically providing services", he said.

The projected population size of New Delhi in 2028 is about 37.2 million, surpassing Tokyo's 36.8 million, it added. "By 2020, Tokyo's population is projected to begin to decline, while Delhi is projected to continue growing and to become the most populous city in the world around 2028", the report said. While 90 per cent of the world's rural population in 2018 lives in Asia and Africa, the current 3.4 billion global rural population is expected to rise slightly in a few years and then decline to 3.1 billion by 2050. The Chinese city of Shanghai is third with 26 million, while São Paulo in Brazil and Mexico City, which each have around 22 million people living in them, are fourth. In related news, cities like Nagasaki and Busan have experienced a significant decline in their population since the start of the 21st century.

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As for rural populations, while they have continued to grow since 1950, it is expected to reach its peak in the next few years, before declining steadily.

Sustainable development, or the successful management of urban growth, is crucial for countries that may face challenges associated with rapid urbanisation, the report suggests.

"When urban growth is rapid, insuring access to housing, water, sanitation, electricity, public transport, education and health care for all is especially challenging", Wilmoth said at a United Nations news conference. Also, urbanisation will play a huge role as there will be a gradual shift in the residence of the human population from rural to urban areas in Asia and Africa.

The report also estimates that by 2030, the world could have 43 so-called megacities - up from 31 today, according to reports.

The report recommends governments adopt better integrated policies on infrastructure and social services to improve the lives of urban and rural dwellers.

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