The objective of the computer simulation model described here is to project, for periods up to one or more decades, the annual incidence and prevalence of HIV infection and AIDS in a population with given epidemiological, behavioural and demorgraphic characteristics. In addition, the epidemic's impact on a range of demographic variables is calculated. The epidemiological components of the model use a compartmental approach and they are described with sets of linear differential equations. The demographic framework in which the epidemiological components are integrated, is based on a standard cohort component method of population projection. The simulated population is stratified by age, gender, sexual behaviour, marital status and infection/disease status. The concluding section provides an illustrative application of the model to a Central African population. In this hypothetical simulation covering the period from 1975 to 2000, HIV prevalence in the adult population rises from 0 to 21 per cent. By the end of the projection period mortality is about double the level that would have prevailed in the absence of the epidemic, but, owing to the very high birth rates that prevail in most of Africa, the growth rate of the population remains substantially positive.