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The 20 Most Populated Cities in the World 2022

Tokyo, Japan

The world's population is continuing to grow, although the growth rates have slowed down in recent years. In every country, the most populous areas are the cities, with sparser population figures in rural areas. While some cities thrive on having a high population and have found modern solutions for housing, transportation, overcrowding, and resources, some heavily populated cities suffer from overcrowding, health issues, poverty, and a strain on resources and infrastructure. So, which are the world's most populous cities? Here are the most populated cities in the world in 2022. `

20. Guangzhou, China, 13,964,637

Just making it onto the list of the most populous cities in the world in 2022 is Guangzhou in China, which has a population of 13,964,637. It is the capital of the Guangdong province in southern China, and it sits alongside the Pearl River. Guangzhou is one of the country's major ports and transportation hubs. In 2021, it was the fourth-most populous city in China but dropped this year to the fifth position, despite an annual increase in the population of 2.41 percent. Statistica says that Guangzhou's population will reach 16.74 million by 2035.

19. Tianjin, China, 14,011,828

Tianjin is a city in Northern China on the coast of the Bohai Sea. It is one of the nine national central cities in China, and it is made up of 12 districts. Tianjin is the fourth-most populous city in China after Shanghai, Beijing, and Chongqing, with a population of 14,011,828, which is an increase of 1.58 percent since 2021. Although it is now more populous than Guangzhou, Tianjin has previously ranked lower in population lists and was the fifth-most populous Chinese city in 2021.

18. Manila, Philippines, 14,406,059

Manila is the capital city of the Philippines, and it lies on the island of Luzon. Although it is the country's capital and most populous city, it is only the second largest city in the Philippines by area, as the largest city is Davao City. The city's population is currently 14,406,059, which is an increase since 2021 of 1.74 percent. It is consistent with the growth rate from previous years, as the population increased by 1.7 percent between 2020 and 2021, 1.64 percent from 2019 to 2020, and 1.61 percent from 2018 to 2019. If the rate of growth continues along the same trend, Manila will have a population of 18.65 million by 2035.

17. Kolkata, India, 15,133,888

Once the capital of India, Kolkata is now the capital of the country's West Bengal State. It is India's third-most populous city and the 17th most populous city in the world. It is home to 15,133,888 residents, although only 4.5 million live in the city proper. The city has seen a 1.07 percent increase over the last 12 months. Data from the 2011 census shows that 76.51 percent of the population are Hindu, 20.6 percent are Muslim, and the other 2.9 percent consists of religious minorities including Christian, Sikh, Buddhist, and Jain.

16. Buenos Aires, Argentina, 15,369,919

Argentina's capital Buenos Aires is the second-most populous city in South America. Since 2021, there has been a population growth of 0.74 percent. It reflects the overall growth in Argentina, where there is a birth every four minutes compared to one death every seven minutes. Overall, Argentina has a net increase of one person every eleven minutes. Of the 15,369,919 people who live in the Buenos Aires metropolitan area, 2.89 million live in the city proper. Overall, the city has a population density of 34,800 per square mile.

15. Lagos, Nigeria, 15,387,639

Lagos is Nigeria's largest city, and it is a port city. It consists of several islands in the Lagos Lagoon plus an inland area, and it is protected from the Atlantic Ocean by barrier islands. The city's population of 15,387,639 is an increase of 3.54 percent since 2021 when the population was 14,862,111. According to Britannica, Lagos was once Nigeria's capital but was replaced in 1975 by Abuja. Lagos remains one of the country's most important industrial, economic, educational, and cultural centers.

14. City with the Greatest Population Growth: Kinshasa, DR Congo

Kinshasa in DR Congo is the city in the top 20 cities that has seen the greatest population growth since 2021. Last year, the city had a population of 14,970,460 and had seen an increase of 4.39 percent to 15,628,085 in 2022. Kinshasa is DC Congo's largest city and the country's capital, and it is the world's largest francophone city. It is located along the Congo River. Population experts estimate the city's population in 2035 at 26.58 million. The second-most populous city in DC Congo is Mbuji Mayi, with a population of 2.77 million.

13. Most Populous European City: Istanbul, Turkey, 15,636,243

Istanbul is an unusual city as it spans two continents. The Bosphorus Strait separates the city's two halves, says Times of India, so one half lies in Europe and the other in Asia. However, Turkey is considered a European country, which makes Istanbul Europe's most populous city with a population of 15,636,243. The population of Istanbul has increased by 1.43 percent since 2021. There has been a consistent pattern of growth over the past four years, as the population grew by 1.47 percent between 2018 and 2019, 1.48 percent between 2019 and 2020, and 1.48 percent from 2020 to 2021.

12. Karachi, Pakistan, 16,839,950

Karachi is Pakistan's largest and most populous city, with a population of 16,839,950, which is an increase of 2.31 percent since 2021. The city lies on the coast of the Arabian Sea, immediately northwest of the Indus River Delta, and it is a principal seaport and major commercial and industrial center. It has a predominantly Muslim population, with some Christian, Hindu, Jain, and Parsi residents.

11. Chongqing, China, 16,874,382,656

China's third-most populous city is Chongqing, which is a municipality in the Sichuan Province that lies at the confluence of the Jialing and Yangtze Rivers. The city's population has increased by 3.01 percent in the last year, which is the second-largest increase of all the cities on the list. Experts believe that the city's population will reach 20.5 million by 2035 if the growth trends continue.

10. Osaka, Japan, 19,059,856

Osaka is the second-most populous city in Japan and the tenth most populous in the world. Despite the high population, there has been a decrease in population levels of 0.27 percent since 2021. It is the 11th consecutive year that there has been a population decline in the city, and it reflects the general decline in Japan as a whole. There are various reasons for the drop in numbers, including men marrying later and not having children outside of marriage, and an increase in women completing higher education and focusing on their careers, says The Washington Post.

9. Mumbai, India, 20,961472

India's second-most populous city is Mumbai, which is the capital city of the state of Maharashtra. The city was once called Bombay, and it was originally formed from seven islands along the geographic belt of the Konkan coastline. The islands are now the seven districts of the city. According to Populationu, the dense population means that living conditions in some parts of the city are far from ideal, and Mumbai is home to India's biggest slum, Dharavi.

8. Beijing, China, 21,333,332

Some people mistakenly believe that Beijing is China's most populous city, but with a population of 21,333,332, it comes in second place after Shanghai. China's capital has experienced a steep growth rate in the last decade, growing from 17,297,940 in 2012. Within Beijing, the Chaoyang district is the most populous and densely populated, as it is home to 3.55 million people.

7. Africa's Most Populous City: Cairo, Egypt, 21,750,020

Cairo is the most populous city in both Egypt and in Africa, says Population Stat. Not only is it Egypt's capital and largest city, but it is also the largest city in the Arab world. With a population of 21,750.020, Cairo has a population density of 19,376 people per square kilometer and is the 37th most densely populated city in the world. In 1950, the city's population was 2.4 million people, so it has seen a population increase of 700 percent since then. The rapid growth is due to the discrepancy between birth and death rates. There are 30 births and only seven deaths to every 1,000 people.

6. Mexico City, Mexico, 22,085,140

Mexico's most populous city is its capital, Mexico City, with a population of 22,085,140, an increase of 0.76 percent since 2021. Although the city's population has steadily increased year on year, the annual rate of increase has remained at under one percent since 2016. Guadalajara and Monterrey are the second and third-most populous cities in Mexico consecutively after Mexico City, both of which are home to more than five million people. Mexico City is in the Valley of Mexico on the high central plateau, and it sits at an altitude of 7,350 feet.

5. The Most Populous City in South America: San Paulo, Brazil, 22,429,800

San Paulo in Brazil is South America's most populous city and the fifth-most populous city in the world. The population has increased by 0.87 percent since 2021. Immigrants constitute a large proportion of the population, and San Paulo is often described as the world's most multicultural city. Brazil's capital, Brasilia, has a much lower population of 4.8 million, and the country's second-most populous city is Rio de Janeiro, with a population of 13,634,000.

4. Dhaka, Bangladesh, 22,478,116

Macro Trends says that Dhaka's population is 22,478,116, which is a 3.39 percent increase since 2021. Although the city's population has risen at a steady rate over the last 20 years, experts believe that the population will decline over the next decade. Dhaka has a significantly higher population than Bangladesh's second-most populous city, which is Chittagong, with a population of 5,253,000.

3. Shanghai, China, 28,516,904

Shanghai is known as the Pearl of the Orient and the Paris of the East. It lies at the mouth of the Yangtze River in the Yangtze River Delta of East China. In the last year, Shanghai has experienced a 2.59 percent population increase, and experts are predicting a continuation of the city's increasing population. By 2016, Shanghai had a greater population than the whole of Taiwan. An interesting fact about Shanghai's demographics is that around 39 percent of the city's residents are long-term migrants.

2. Delhi, India, 32,065,760

A decade ago, Delhi's population was 18.98 million, so there has been a population increase of more than 11 million over a ten-year period. It is expected that the city will continue to see an upward trend in population, and estimates show a potential population of 43.3 million by 2035. Not only is Delhi the most populous city in India, but it is also the largest city by area. Furthermore, it has one of the highest population densities in the world, with 29,259.12 per square mile.

1. Tokyo, Japan, 37,274,000

According to World Population Review, the most populous city in the world is Japan's capital, Tokyo. Although it is the world's most populous city, there has been an 18 percent population decrease since 2021, when the figure was 37,339.804. In the last year, there have been 811,604 births recorded, compared to more than 1.44 million deaths. It is the biggest decrease in population since data became available. Fertility rates have dropped, and more than 30 percent of the Japanese population is over 65. Coronavirus also played a role in the drop in population figures.

Liz Flynn

Written by Liz Flynn

Liz Flynn has worked as a full-time writer since 2010 after leaving a career in education. She finds almost all topics she writes about interesting, but her favorite subjects are travel and food. Liz loves the process of researching information, learning new things, and putting into words what others who share her interests might like to read. Although she spends most of her time writing, she also enjoys spending time with her husband and four children, watching films, cooking, dining out, reading, motorsports, gaming, and walking along the beach next to her house with her dog.

Read more posts by Liz Flynn

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