Similarities and ChallengesThe first thing that is obvious to even the most casual observerof India and China is their sheer population size. Almost a third of theworld’s entire population are Indian or Chinese, including 1.1 billionIndians and 1.3 billion Chinese (UN Population Division of Economicand Social Affairs, 2007). Population size can be a good thing, aseconomies of scale can be brought to bear, creating efficiencies. Butwhen both of the nations currently under discussion are developingnations which have not fully extended all the infrastructure Westernnations consider basic to all corners of their lands, there are hugechallenges to overcome. Both have an enormous burden to bearsimply extending basic education to their citizens, as Zhangdocuments in the case of China (Zhang, 2005).This challenge is compounded by the fact that their populationsare not static – in spite of well-known policies such as China’s onechild per family. That is certainly helping, since according to the UnitedNations, India’s population is growing faster. But China, due to thepopulation lag effect, is still expected to be home to 1.4 billion peoplein 2050 (UN Population Division of Economic and Social Affairs, 2007).The same report projects India’s 2050 population to be 1.7 billion,meaning India will likely surpass China as the world’s most populouscountry.