China’s rocketing elderly population prompts a rethink on pensions

Darren Wee, Monday 1 October 2012

China’s one-child policy and growing social security deficit mean it is getting old before it gets rich

China Elderly Playing Domino

Elderly Chinese men in Beijing play dominoes. Before 2009, only 30% of the population had a pension; now, 55% are covered. Photograph: Diego Azubel/EPA
Early in the morning, an army of older workers descend onto Beijing’s streets, rummaging through bins for recyclable materials. Plastic bottles can be sold for 1 mao (less than $0.02). For many older Chinese people, this is their retirement plan. The basic pension is just 55 yuan ($8.75) a month, forcing thousands to collect rubbish to make ends meet. Continue reading

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Views divided on bid to revise pension system

 2012-09-27 07:46 By He Dan (China Daily)

Views divided on bid to revise pension system

Elderly residents take part in a cane aerobics competition in the Shizhong district in Zaozhuang, Shandong province, on Wednesday. About 6,000 senior citizens practice cane aerobics in the district. Ji Zhe/For China Daily

Proposal measures include raising retirement age and more premiums

The country’s top social security fund administrator has suggested making people work longer and receive their pensions later to offset a pension fund shortfall. However, the public and experts expressed mixed reaction toward the proposal. Continue reading

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Ageing China: Changes and challenges

BBC/19 September 2012

Fewer children
In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the government advocated a “later, longer, fewer” lifestyle, encouraging people to marry later, have wide gaps between children and fewer children overall. It also instated the controversial one-child policy. These were attempts to curb population growth in a bid to help modernise the economy. Continue reading

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Rise in China’s Aging Poses Challenge to Beijing

NYT DIDI KIRSTEN TATLOW September 10, 2012

Forty minutes’ drive east of Beijing in Yanjiao, a town just inside the border of neighboring Hebei Province, a vast care facility for the elderly is rising in green fields, part of a solution to one of China’s most pressing challenges: fast-growing numbers of elderly people.

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