Tibet's population put at 2.84 mln in gov't survey

2008-04-09 03:20:09 Xinhua English

LHASA, April 9 (Xinhua) -- The population of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region was 2.84 million at the end of 2007, according to government figures.

The total population was 30,000 more than the end of 2006, according to the report on the regional social and economic development, compiled by Tibet's regional bureau of statistics and a survey team from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

However, it is unclear what percentage of the population is currently made up of ethnic Tibetans.

According to the 2000 national census by the NBS, Tibetans comprised 92 percent of the population. However, according to a 2005 joint regional-NBS joint study, the percentage was 95.3 percent.

The 2007 study didn't break down the population by ethnic group because the statistics were based on samples and were not as comprehensive as a census, an employee of the general office of the Tibet statistics bureau told Xinhua on Wednesday.

According to the 2007 report, the total population growth rate averaged 1.13 percent.

Urban residents made up about 20 percent of the total, with the rest living in villages.

China's family planning policy, which limits most urban couples to one child and rural families to two since the late 1970s, does not apply to Tibetans.

According to the report, the average income of the urban population rose 24.5 percent last year to 11,131 yuan (about 1,590U.S. dollars).

Farmers and herders had a per capita net income of 2,788 yuan, up 14.5 percent. The central government plans to increase that figure to 3,820 yuan by 2010, near the national average for farmers.

In 2007, the region's gross domestic product (GDP) grew 14 percent to more than 34.2 billion yuan, about 12,100 yuan per capita.