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China Letter-News and Human Rights

China human rights news with focus on the Uygur of Xinjiang, Tibetans and Tibet, Chinese mining workers, religion, corruption and censorship.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Aging Population a Threat to China's Economy

China's Aging Population"China faces an unprecedented surge in its elderly population that threatens to undermine its economic development and put an unsustainable burden on public budgets and extended families, according to 'The Graying of the Middle Kingdom,' a new CSIS report. "

The report finds that to meet this growing challenge of an aging population, China must implement an old-age safety net and establish a genuinely funded pension system.

The Graying of the Middle Kingdom report in PDF is available here

The report finds that "the magnitude of China's coming age wave is staggering." "By 2040 there will be 397 million Chinese elders, which is more than the total current population of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United States combined. How China navigates its aging challenge will go a long way toward determining whether it achieves its aspiration of becoming a prosperous and stable developed economy."

The "One Child Policy" is having an enormous effect on age distribution in China's demographics. Already experts have given warning about the possible effects on society of a situation developing where there will be an excess of 20 million males of marriageable age by 2050.

As well in an article on a related subject warnings are out about the possible problems associated with the rapid aging of the population as it concerns social security and pensions.

In an article entitled China must rethink pensions or face crisis: it states that "Glaring shortcomings in China's basic pension system could leave tens of millions of people destitute in old age and provoke a crisis unless the government re-thinks its reforms, a U.S. think tank said on Monday."

All of this is exacerbated by the fact that the "one child" policy will have denied a generation of parents, especially the poor and those from rural areas, a traditional source of income support, that of a large family.

Some very interesting problems on the horizon for China

Muzi.com | News : China's Aging Surge Threatens Economic Prospects:

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