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What about the low birth rate warning in China? Worry about the prospect of population aging

The crisis caused by low fertility is looming. With the opening of the national two child policy, many families have already started to have two children, and many couples have not had children because of various pressures. At present, China has begun to enter the era of low fertility, the future of China's aging population will intensify!

On January 26, Zheng Zhongwei, vice president of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and vice president of Peking Union Medical College (school), pointed out that in 2020, the number of people over 60 years old in China will reach 250 million. The aging proportion of the three top three provinces, Shandong, Sichuan and Liaoning, will exceed the world's aging proportion. The aging population of these three provinces will exceed 20 million, exceeding the total population of some European countries.

"How to achieve healthy aging is an urgent problem for China at present. "He said at the press conference of the blue book on Elderly Health jointly held by Peking Union Medical College, China geriatric health care association and social sciences literature press on that day.

Data display:

At the end of 2018, the total population of mainland China was 1395.38 million, an increase of 5.3 million over the previous year. The annual birth population was 15.23 million, down 2 million from the previous year, and the birth rate was 10.94 & permil;, the lowest since 1949.

However, the pace of aging is accelerating rapidly. At the end of 2018, the population aged 60 and above reached 249.49 million, accounting for 17.9% of the total population, an increase of 8.59 million over the same period of last year, an increase of 89.6 million over the end of 2008.

According to the annual growth rate of 8-10 million people aged 60 and above in the future, in 10 years or so, the population aged 60 and above in China will reach 340 million or so, and about one elderly person will be supported for every two people working.

Low fertility makes the burden of aging several times heavier

The 21st century economic reporter learned that because the birth rate of the population is gradually decreasing, the aging rate is accelerating, and the aging burden is increasing rapidly.

According to the above blue book, it is expected that from 2015 to 2050, the proportion of the total social expenditure on pension, medical care, care, welfare and facilities in China's GDP will increase from 7.33% to 26.24%, an increase of 18.91 percentage points.

Therefore, in the face of such severe challenges of aging, China urgently needs to develop a path of healthy aging with Chinese characteristics, which will provide China's wisdom and experience for the countries in the world who are also in the "old before rich" list.

The reason for this is, Different from the developed countries that are "rich while old" and "rich before old", China is in the state of "not rich but old before old" when it has just entered the aging society. However, with the arrival of the aging society in 2026, it is difficult for China to reach the level of "rich" by virtue of the existing economic development trend, that is, the aging process of population is ahead of the economic development process, which makes the risks and challenges facing China more serious.

The challenge of the aging population to the economic and social development is mainly reflected in the fact that, due to the reduction of the proportion of the labor force population and the increase of the proportion of the elderly population, the expenditure of the whole society on pension, medical care, care, welfare security and facilities construction will increase significantly, and the financial burden of the government will increase.

Liu Yuanli, President of China geriatric health association and Dean of the school of public health, Peking Union Medical College, pointed out that China's elderly with moderate and mild disability are 46 million, 95% of them are cared for by family members, and less than 1 / 100 of them are cared by professional personnel. Taking care of the disabled elderly has become an increasing financial burden for some families.

Some family members could have gone to work to create wealth. As a result, due to the lack of social security system, they spent a lot of time caring for the elderly.

'poverty due to old age cannot occur as a result. Liu Yuanli believes that the government, family, community and society should jointly fund and provide professional services to care for the disabled elderly.

How to avoid labor shortage?

The above blue book points out that the aging population will change the labor supply pattern and affect the technological progress, which will make China fall into the "middle-income trap", presenting a situation of labor shortage and relatively insufficient investment of talents and resources related to technological progress, leading to weak economic growth.

Data shows that at the end of 2018, the population aged 60 and over reached 249.49 million, accounting for 17.9% of the total population, an increase of 8.59 million, or 0.6 percentage point over the same period of last year; the population aged 65 and over increased by 8.27 million, or 0.5 percentage point, and the degree of population aging continued to deepen. The population aged 60 and above has increased by 89.6 million in 10 years (compared with the end of 2008 at the end of 2018).

According to the annual growth rate of 8-10 million people aged 60 and above in the future, the population of 60 and above in China will reach 340 million in about 10 years.

Since 2012, the number and proportion of the working age population in China has declined for seven consecutive years, with a decrease of more than 26 million in seven years. At the end of 2018, the number and proportion of the 16-59-year-old working age population decreased by 4.7 million, with a decrease of 0.6 percentage point. At the end of 2018, there were 775.86 million employees nationwide, the first decline since 1978. According to the current acceleration of aging and the decrease of employment population, in about 10 years, China will support one retiree for every two working people, which is similar to that of Japan, whose economy has experienced zero growth for 20 consecutive years.

Li Xiru, director of the population and Employment Statistics Department of the National Bureau of statistics, wrote recently that:

Affected by the continuous decrease of the working age population, the total labor supply has declined. At the end of 2018, the total employment of the whole country has also declined for the first time. It is expected that it will continue to decline in the next few years. At the same time, the increase of the proportion of the elderly population increases the burden of the working age population, which brings challenges to economic development and social security.

In the past year, China's 16-59-year-old labor age population has continued to decrease, and the total employment population has declined for the first time. However, the total labor age population is still nearly 900 million, and the total employment population is still 780 million, and the labor resources are still rich. Through improving the labor participation rate, expanding and ensuring employment, we can play a good role in the existing labor age population and the employment population, and then we can improve the employment efficiency It has great potential to change the structure of population and working age population, improve the quality of population and working age population, and play the role of human resources and human resources.

He suggested that, in the next step, we should deeply grasp the law of population development and change, scientifically formulate response measures, implement a series of national strategies such as balanced population development, actively respond to population aging and aging society, optimize and improve the structure and quality of the working age population, and constantly promote the sustainable, coordinated and healthy development of population and social economy.

Can older people become labor force?

The blue book also proposes to improve the healthy life expectancy and quality of life of the elderly in the future, provide them with supportive environment for pension, prevention, medical treatment, rehabilitation and care, and greatly reduce the financial burden of the government and society through disease prevention and health promotion.

Specifically, there are the following suggestions:

The realization of healthy aging and active aging measures will increase the healthy and energetic elderly, reduce the depreciation rate of human capital, and contribute to the formation of the second demographic dividend. At present, the age structure of the elderly in China tends to be "younger". On the one hand, it can increase the supply of "silver haired labor" for the traditional working population (15-64 years old), give full play to the advantages of mature skills and experience of the elderly, especially the retired group, and continue to contribute to the development of social economy.

On the other hand, the elderly can become informal labor force, make contributions to the family by taking care of their children, alleviate the family pressure of their children, and make contributions to the social economy through tax and consumption, asset transfer, etc. At the same time, the aging population structure with fewer children will liberate more women from child rearing and traditional household chores, and the number of women's labor force will further increase.

Healthy aging and active aging will promote the transformation of economic development mode and the adjustment and upgrading of industrial structure. Population aging will increase the consumption rate of the elderly population, which will force the transformation of China's economic growth mode from investment and export dependence to domestic demand. Long term care and health services for the elderly will lead to the increase of employment, and promote pension products, insurance products and medical industry And so on.

To realize and promote healthy aging and active aging is the only way for China to cope with the rapid development of aging. We should take a scientific view of the development process of population aging, establish a comprehensive policy system conducive to the development of elderly health undertakings, develop human resources in an all-round way, promote the combination of medical care and maintenance, promote the construction of long-term care insurance and service system, and build a friendly environment for the elderly People and their families can enjoy a higher quality of life, promote the harmony of intergenerational relations, and strive to achieve sustainable development in the context of aging.

The blue book points out that with the acceleration of the aging process in China, the scale of the disabled and semi disabled elderly groups will gradually expand, and the medical and pension services for the disabled and semi disabled elderly are the current policy bottlenecks and shortcomings. It is suggested that the state should pay special attention to the development of policies to make up for the shortcomings of relevant medical and pension services.