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Population of largest cities APAC 2019

Japan’s largest city, greater Tokyo, had a staggering 37.44 million inhabitants in 2019, making it the most populous city across the Asia Pacific region. India had the second largest city after Japan with a population consisting of approximately 29.4 million inhabitants. Contrastingly, approximately 610 thousand inhabitants populated Sri Lanka's largest city in 2019.

A megacity region

Not only did Japan and India have the largest cities throughout the Asia Pacific region but they also had the most populated cities worldwide in 2018. Interestingly, over half on the world’s megacities were situated in the Asia Pacific region. However, being home to more than half of the world’s population, it does not seem surprising that by 2025 it is expected that more than two thirds of the megacities across the globe will be located in the Asia Pacific region. Other megacities are also expected to emerge within the Asia Pacific region throughout the next decade. There have even been suggestions that Indonesia’s Jakarta and its conurbation will overtake Greater Tokyo in terms of population size by 2030.

Increasing populations

Increased populations in megacities can be down to increased economic activity. As more countries across the Asia Pacific region have made the transition from agriculture to industry, the population has adjusted accordingly. Thus, more regions have experienced higher shares of urban populations. However, as many cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, and Seoul have an aging population, this may have an impact on their future population sizes, with these Asian regions estimated to have significant shares of the population being over 65 years old by 2035.

Population of the largest city in selected countries or regions in the Asia Pacific region in 2019

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Release date

September 2020



Survey time period


Supplementary notes

The population of the largest city is the urban population living in the country's largest metropolitan area.

Figures have been rounded.

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Statistics on "Megacities in Asia Pacific"

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