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Hong Kong Population Projections 2012-2041 (with photo/video)
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     The Hong Kong population is projected to reach 8.47 million in 30 years' time according to an updated set of population projections released by the Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) today (July 31).

     "Population projections provide a common basis for the Government in planning public services and facilities.  They are regularly updated to take account of information on latest developments of the population," Deputy Commissioner for Census and Statistics, Mr Leslie Tang, said.

     In the updated set of projections, the Hong Kong Resident Population is projected to increase at an average annual rate of 0.6%, from 7.07 million in mid 2011 to 8.47 million in mid 2041.  The average annual growth rate over the ten-year period from 2011-2021 is projected to be 0.8%.  Yet with significant increase in number of deaths upon ageing of the population, the average annual growth rate over the last 10 years of the projection period is projected to slacken to 0.4%.

     Over the entire period from mid 2011 to mid 2041, the overall population is projected to increase by 1.40 million.  There is a natural decrease (i.e. deaths less births) of 38 000 and a net movement (i.e. inflow less outflow) of 1.44 million.

     Within the Hong Kong Resident Population, the number of Usual Residents is projected to increase at an average annual rate of 0.6% from 6.86 million in mid 2011 to 8.22 million in mid 2041, and the number of Mobile Residents at a similar rate of 0.5% from 212 200 to 245 000.

     "Broadly speaking, Hong Kong's fertility showed a declining trend over the past two decades.  The total fertility rate of Hong Kong, which is the number of children born to 1 000 women during their life time, has been consistently below the replacement level of 2 100.  It decreased from 1 281 live births per 1 000 women in 1991 to the historical low of 901 in 2003.  It rebounded in recent years and reached 1 204 in 2011.  In the fertility projections, reference is made to various factors, including the proportion of now married women, the marital fertility rates and births born in Hong Kong to Mainland women.  The total fertility rate is projected to decrease gradually from 1 204 live births per 1 000 women in 2011 to 1 151 in 2041," said Mr Tang.

     Hong Kong has experienced a continuous decline in mortality during 1991íV2011, leading to an increase in life expectancy.  In 2011, the expectation of life at birth (provisional) was 80.5 years for males and 86.7 years for females.  Compared with other economies, Hong Kong enjoys a very low mortality.  The expectation of life at birth is projected to increase to 84.4 years for males and 90.8 years for females in 2041.  The number of deaths is projected to increase from about 42 700 per year currently to about 82 400 at the end of the projection period.  The increase in the number of deaths is mainly attributable to the growing proportion of older persons in the population despite a longer life expectancy.

     "The population is expected to remain on an ageing trend.  The proportion of the population aged 65 and over is projected to rise markedly, from 13% in 2011 to 30% in 2041.  The pace of population ageing is projected to accelerate in the coming 20 years with the proportions reaching 19% in 2021 and then further to 26% in 2031.  A slightly moderating trend of population ageing is projected in the last 10 years of the projection period.  Meanwhile, the proportion of the population aged under 15 is projected to decrease gradually from 12% in 2011 to 9% in 2041," said Mr Tang.

     "The phenomenon of ageing of the population can also be further analysed based on the dependency ratio.  This is a demographic indicator reflecting the age composition of the population.  It is defined as the number of persons aged 'under 15' and '65 and over' per 1 000 persons aged 15-64.  The ratio is projected to rise continuously from 333 in 2011 to 511 in 2026 and 645 in 2041," added Mr Tang.

     The ageing trend is also revealed by the increasing median age of the population which will rise from 41.7 in 2011 to 45.1 in 2021, and further to 47.7 in 2031 and 49.9 in 2041.

     The sex ratio (i.e. the number of males per 1 000 females) of the population is projected to fall noticeably, from 876 in 2011 to 788 in 2026 and 712 in 2041.  Variations in the sex ratio by age group are expected.  In particular, the sex ratio for the age group 25-44 is expected to be much affected by the presence of foreign domestic helpers comprising mostly younger females.  Also relevant is the continued entry of One way Permit Holders (OWPH) in the coming years, many being Hong Kong men's wives living in the Mainland.  Making reference to data which exclude foreign domestic helpers, the sex ratio of the population is projected to be higher, though it will still trend down from 948 in 2011 to 867 in 2026 and 786 in 2041.

     The characteristics of the population for selected years are presented in Table 1 while the components of population growth are analysed in Table 2.

     The "component method", which is commonly used internationally, is adopted for compiling the population projections.  Under this method, the population of a base year is brought forward by age and sex under separate projections of fertility, mortality and movement, year after year until the end of the projection period.  As a policy assumption, it is projected that there will be 150 OWPH per day.  The recent trends of the residency and mobility patterns of the Hong Kong population provide the basis for formulating the assumptions on other net movements.

     Similar to the last round, births born in Hong Kong to Mainland women and their intention of stay in Hong Kong have been taken into account in this updated set of population projections.  It has been taken in this updated set of population projections that there are no Type II babies starting from 2013 because of a series of measures which has been /will be implemented, including (i) public hospitals would not accept bookings for delivery in 2013 from non-local pregnant women,  (ii) the Department of Health would stop issuing the "Confirmation Certificate on Delivery Booking" to non-local Mainland women whose husbands are not Hong Kong residents for giving birth in Hong Kong in 2013 and (iii) the Hong Kong Private Hospitals Association also indicated that consensus was reached to stop accepting delivery bookings from non-local Mainland women whose husbands are not Hong Kong residents next year.

     A publication "Hong Kong Population Projections 2012-2041" on the detailed projection results, along with the projection methodology and assumptions, is now available.

     Another publication "Hong Kong Life Tables 2006-2041" describing the present and future mortality conditions of Hong Kong in the form of life tables is also available today.  Apart from presenting the life tables, the publication also describes the method of constructing a life table.

     Users can download the above publications free of charge at the website of the C&SD (www.censtatd.gov.hk/hkstat/srh/index.jsp).

     Enquiries on more detailed statistics can be directed to the Demographic Statistics Section, Census and Statistics Department (Tel: 2716 8044 or e-mail: population@censtatd.gov.hk).

Ends/Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Issued at HKT 15:03

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