ABSTRACT

The developing countries are 114 sovereign countries, all members of the United Nations and most of its specialized agencies. They are rather closely united in a group called "the 77" from the number of its members when first organized in 1964. The 77 represent around 2 billion people, over 50 percent of the world's population—two-thirds if one includes the People's Republic of China, which although not a formal member of the group usually supports them in U.N. forums. Although demographic forecasting is a hazardous occupation, by the year 2000 the countries now belonging to the 77 will probably represent around 5 billion of the 6.5 billion people then on earth, as their population is growing about three times as fast as that of the developed countries (see figure 1).