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A Deliberately Contrived False Issue

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A Deliberately Contrived False Issue:

It is argued that the frenetic over concern in the rich nations with the population growth of poor nations is really an attempt by the former to hold down the development of the latter in order to maintain an international status quo that is favorable to their self- interest.

Rich nations are pressuring poor nations to adopt aggressive population control programs even though they themselves went through a period of sizable population increase that accelerated their own development processes.

3. Population growth is Desirable:

A more controversial economic argument is that of population growth as an essential ingredient to stimulate economic development.

Larger population provide the needed consumer demand

 to generate favorable economies of scale

 to lower production cost

 To provide a sufficient labor supply to achieve higher output levels.

It is argued that many rural regions in the Third World are in reality under populated in the sense that much unused but arable land could yield large increases in agricultural output if only more people were available to cultivate it.

In terms of ratios of population to arable land, Africa south of the Sahara is said to have a total f 1400 million arable hectares. Land actually being cultivated amounts to only 170 million hectares, or about 1 hectare per rural inhabitant. 12% of all total arable land is under cultivation.

So it's a drawback to raising agricultural output.

The important pint is that these arguments represent range of opinions and viewpoints within the Third World need to be seriously weighted against the counterarguments of those who believe that population growth is a real problem.

Population Growth is a Real Problem

Positions supporting the need to curtail population growth through special programs and policies are typically based on one or more of these four arguments.

Four arguments:

1. The Population 'Hawk' Argument

2. The provision of Family- planning services

3. Human rights

4. Development plus Population programs

Goals and Objectives: Toward a Consensus

The essential components of the Consensus Opinion lead us to following three goals and objectives that might be included in any realistic approach:

1. In countries



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