Age distribution in China – additional information
As can be seen from this statistic, the age pyramid in China has been gradually shifting towards older demographics during the past decade. Mainly due to low birth rates in China, the age group of 0 to 14 year-olds has declined by approximately six percent since 2002, whereas the age groups 15 to 64 years and 65 years and over have seen growth of about four and two percent, respectively. Thus, the median age of the Chinese population has been constantly rising since 1970 and is forecast to reach 47 years by 2050. Accompanied by a more or less steady mortality rate of about 7 per thousand, China is showing strong signs of an aging population.
The impact of this severe change in demographics is the subject of an ongoing scientific discussion. Rising standards of living in China contain the demand for better health care and pension insurance for retirees, which will be hard to meet with the social insurance system in China still being in its infancy. Per capita expenditure on medical care and services of urban households has more than tripled since 2000 with a clear and distinctive upward trend for the near future. As for social security spending, public pension expenditure is forecast to take up approximately nine percent of China’s GDP by 2050.