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Abstract PIP: The case of Senegal is used to illustrate the impact of population dynamics on the economic development of a country and the process of creating a population policy. 1 of the 6 principles of the Kilimanjaro Program of Action concerning African population and autonomous development was the interdependence between population and development, but interest in the problem was only sporadic until the deepening of the economic crisis. Population growth is now regarded as a major constraint on improvement of welfare for the population. The population of the Sahel countries has almost doubled in the past 2 decades as a consequence of very high fertility rates and declining mortality rates. About 44\% of the Sahel population is under 15 years old and only about 53\% is aged 15-64. The population is unequally distributed and the proportion urban increased from 18 to 23\% between 1982-85. The general opinion is that the African population is increasing more rapidly than available resources. From 1973-83, Senegal's gross national product increased by 2.2\%/year on average, less than the population increase of 2.5\%. Cereal production increased by 1\%/year between 1973-81. Investments in agriculture have declined continuously since 1973. Cereal needs are on the order of 6.69 million tons, while production is only 4.4 million tons. According to the World Bank the literacy rate for 5 Sahel countries was only 15\% in 1982, and only 35\% of school aged children are enrolled. The constant increase of population is also putting pressure on health services. In response to these problems, Senegal developed its population policy in 3 phases. In the 1st phase, 3 commissions and a working group carried out research and documentation around the country, producing sectorial documents. In the 2nd phase, workshops and seminars were held for the critical examination of the sectorial documents, culminating in presentation of a synthesis to the National Commission on Population and to the Interministerial Council, which adopted the work. The population policy is a longterm orientation seeking to balance population development with economic and social development in Senegal. The 4 parts of the policy declaration examine population and development problems in Senegal, present the different aspects of a population policy, outline legislative and regulatory actions to be undertaken, and identify personnel and institutions that will be involved.
This article was published in Pop Sahel
and referenced in Business and Economics Journal