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Female Life Expectancy at Birth in China, Europe, USA and India: 1950-2050

Source: World Population Prospects, the 2008 Revision. United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), Population Division, New York. See:
Note: Scale starts at age 35 to better illustrate differences between countries. Europe (48) see Glossary

China's female life expectancy at birth increased significantly in the late 1960s after the "Great Leap Forward". Today, China's female life expectancy is remarkably close to the average life expectancy of Europe - just some 2 years lower. Europe's female life expectancy is about 2 years lower than in the United States of America.

Compared to China, India's female life expectancy has increased much slower. Today, it is almost 10 years below the level of China and more than 16 years below the level of the United States of America.

These numbers demonstrate the remarkable development success of China, whose government has focused on bringing basic health care to most (rural) regions and social groups. While India certainly has world-class hospitals and doctors, basic health care, hygiene, and health education has apparently not reached all sections of the population.

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This data section was updated on 18 December 2011

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Copyright 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 by Gerhard K. Heilig. All rights reserved. - 18 April 2012