Two scenarios on Chinese population dynamics based on a multiregional projection model
Mattia Landoni, Duke University and Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research
Migration between Chinese provinces is changing the face of the country. We present the results of a set of multiregional projections for the Chinese population according to the model of A. Rogers (1995). The population is divided by age, gender and province, based on data of the 1990 and 2000 censuses. Some imputation had to take place to make up for birth underreporting and for missing cross-tabulations. We develop two scenarios covering the 2000-2020 time span: in the first, migration rates are constant; in the second, they double throughout 20 years. The second scenario is not unlikely, given the government’s growing tolerance of migrant workers, and given that propensity to interprovincial migration could be much higher (such as, for example, in the USA). In Scenario 1, migration peaks in 2005 and then slows down because of population aging. In Scenario 2, migration increases at a slower and slower pace across the whole projection horizon. Migration has important effects at the provincial level. In most provinces, the effect of migration is as large or larger than that of natural growth. In the three independent metropolises (Shanghai, Beijing and Tianjin) migration is by far the largest factor of population growth, making up for a very low fertility and reducing the dependency ratio; rural provinces like Hunan, on the other hand, lose working-age population to outmigration.