Population of Beijing, China 1980-2035

Beijing is the capital city of the most populous country in the world. In 2010, the resident population living in the urban areas of Beijing amounted to about 16.44 million inhabitants and was forecasted to grow up to almost 20.5 million by 2020.

Population development of China

As the political and cultural center of China, Beijing has proven its attractiveness to Chinese as well as foreigners as a place to work and live. Furthering its appeal, Beijing is home to some of the best education and medical resources in China. Due to China’s Hukou system, permanent residents who are registered in Beijing can enjoy social benefits that are different from those in other regions. Beijing is also one of the key destinations for migrant workers in China. These migrant workers have contributed significantly to the rapid development of this giant city over the past years.

Pressure from increasing population

Beijing is faced with pressure from its increasing population. Despite poor air quality, increasing traffic congestion, crowded subway trains, and unaffordable housing prices, Beijing is still perceived as a place for many young people to pursue their dreams. The government is spending more on infrastructure construction to increase the city’s capacity and to improve the connection of suburban areas to the downtown. The Daxing International Airport, which was put into operation in 2019, will alleviate the pressure on the current Beijing Capital International Airport and hopefully improve the economic development of the southern part of Beijing.

Population of the urban area of Beijing, China from 1980 to 2035

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Release date

May 2018



Survey time period

1980 to 2010

Supplementary notes

According to the source, the figures reflect the "population in all city districts meeting the criteria such as contiguous built-up areas, being the location of the local government, being a street or having a resident committee." In contrast, official Chinese population figures for Beijing municipality count all people living in the administrative area of Beijing municipality, including distant suburbs and villages on agrarian land.

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