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Ecuador: Population
Country Study > Chapter 2 > The Society and Its Environment > Population

POPULATION


Source: Based on information from Centro Latinoamericano de Demografía, Ecuador: Estimaciones y Projecciones de Población, 1950-2000, Quito, 1984, 48, 62. Unavailable

Source: Based on information from Centro Latinoamericano de Demografía, Ecuador: Estimaciones y Projecciones de Población, 1950-2000, Quito, 1984, 48, 62. Unavailable

Source: Based on information from Centro Latinoamericano de Demografía, Ecuador: Estimaciones y Projecciones de Población, 1950-2000, Quito, 1984, 48, 62.

The government conducted national censuses in 1950, 1962, 1974, and 1982 and scheduled another for 1990. In the late 1980s, estimates of total population by 1990 ranged from 10.8 to 11 million. The annual growth rate was an estimated 2.3 to 2.8 percent. Population growth rates had been high since the onset of modern census-taking, with an increase of 3.2 percent annually in the 1960s and 3.0 percent in the 1970s. Demographers expected the rate to decline to approximately 2.4 percent by the end of the century. Their estimates of total population in 2000 ranged from 13.6 to 14.2 million with the lower figure more commonly accepted.

Despite the declining growth rate, a variety of indicators from the 1980s showed the country to be in the midst of a population explosion that was likely to continue beyond the year 2000.

The total fertility rate (the number of children a woman could expect to bear during her life) dropped by an estimated one-third between 1950 and 1990. Socioeconomic background had a significant impact on the rate; the mean by region or ethnic group varied by as much as 3.5 children per woman. Estimates of the rate by the year 2000 ranged from 3.6 to 4.3 children per woman.

The high rate of population growth generated pressure on the country's limited resources. Even assuming only moderate growth to the end of the century, the primary and secondary schools' budget would have to rise to 70 percent over that of 1980 to keep pace with population. Moreover, more than 120,000 new jobs would be required each year to maintain employment levels of the early 1980s.

Increasingly aware of the high costs of continued population growth, the government in the 1970s accepted in principle the need for family planning and control of child spacing and attempted to incorporate demographic variables into national economic planning. Nonetheless, maternal and child health programs were often ineffective. A contraceptive practices survey in 1982 found that 65 percent of the women not using contraceptives nevertheless wanted to participate in some form of family planning and would have participated in family planning if a program were available. Given continued high birth rates, many demographers doubted government estimates that 40 percent of women of childbearing age were using contraceptives in the mid-1980s.

Data as of 1989




Last Updated: January 1989


Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Ecuador was first published in 1989. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on Factba.se.

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Section 26 of 128






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