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Muslim population to grow faster in next two decades

According to a study conducted jointly by the Pew Research Centre and the John Templeton Foundation, Muslim population around the globe will grow at twice the rate of non-Muslims over the next two decades. On an average, the growth rate of Muslims is likely to be 1.5 percent as compared to 0.7 percent for non-Muslims. Of the total Muslim population, 82 percent live in Asia, West Asia and North Africa and by the year 2030 the percentage is expected to decline at around 79 percent. Overall percentage growth of Muslims is predicted to remain stable over the next 20 years. In 2010, the Muslim percentage was 23.4 percent of the world’s population of 6.9 billion and by the year 2030 the Muslim percentage is projected to be around 26.4 percent. Pew Research Centre has also planned to conduct a study on the demographic growth of all other religions worldwide like Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism and Judaism. The other important features of the projections are: 1. in some parts of Europe the population of Muslims will increase to double digits. In France and Belgium, the figure is likely to increase to 10.3 percent till 2030. 2. Pakistan will surpass Indonesia as the most populous country in the entire world. 3. Fertility rates among Muslims will decline over these years. 4. Muslim population in India will remain at third largest in the world. 5. Population of American Muslims will rise from 2.6 million in 2010 to 6.2 million by the year 2030. 6. The number of Muslims in Canada is expected to nearly triple in the next 20 years, from about 940,000 in 2010 to about 2.7 million in 2030. 7. From 14.6 percent in the 2010, the population of Indian Muslims is projected to be around 16 percent. 8. Muslim population in Israel will grow from 14 percent in 2010 to 23 percent in 2030.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-28 February 2011 on page no. 18

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