SS Trust Fund May Be the Least of Our Worries

Friday, February 25, 2005

SS Trust Fund May Be the Least of Our Worries

Those of us who have followed the debate over Social Security reform know that the year 2048 is noteworthy. If there are no increases in payroll tax rates or no cuts in SS benefits between now and then, 2048 is the year when many experts project that the SS trust fund will start running a deficit.

Definitely something to be concerned about. But the United Nations hopes Americans think about what they may face two years thereafter -- in the year 2050. According to the Associated Press:
The world’s population will increase by 40 percent to 9.1 billion in 2050 but virtually all the growth will be in the developing world, especially in the 50 poorest countries, the U.N. Population Division said.

... the population in less developed countries is expected to swell from 5.3 billion today to 7.8 billion in 2050. By contrast, the population of richer developed countries will remain mostly unchanged, at 1.2 billion.

“It is going to be a strain on the world,” Hania Zlotnik, the division’s director, told a news conference. She said the expected growth has “important and serious implications” because it will be concentrated in countries that already have problems providing adequate shelter, health care and education.

Between 2005 and 2050, eight countries — India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Congo, Bangladesh, Uganda, the United States, Ethiopia and China — are likely to contribute half of the world’s population increase, the report said.

The population is projected to at least triple in Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Congo, the Republic of Congo, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger and Uganda, it said.

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