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  • Grim global toll of AIDS

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Three years ago the United Nations predicted the global population would grow from its current 6.3 billion to 9.3 billion in the year 2050.

But experts looking into the global AIDS disaster now believe the spread of the disease makes that figure too high. Instead they say that the figure will be closer to 8.9 billion, a discrepancy of 400 million lives mainly due to the AIDS pandemic.

As well as the threat of AIDS, falling fertility levels in the Third World are also contributing to the revision, with some countries dropping beneath the rate needed to ensure long-term replacement of their population.

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