Beijing: As the count of the aged citizens amongst the Chinese population is progressively on the rise, China seems to be making way towards a ‘Hyper Aged Society’, such is the conclusion drawn from a new report which has come to the fore. The ‘China Association of Social Security’ in China has published this report and warned that by the year 2035, the count of the elderly in China would have reached 40 crores. Since the year 2000, China has been recognized as an ‘Ageing Society’, and every year one crore citizens are added to the count of the aged .
For the past few decades, China which has made a rapid progress in the economic sector, has also taken lead in science and technological sectors as well. Due to the progress in the medical field, there is an increase in the life span of the Chinese citizens. By the end of 2016, the count of citizens in China who had crossed the age of 60 and above was 23.08 crores. In this group, more than 15 crore citizens are 65 years and above, i.e. 10.8% in proportion to the Chinese population.
According to a criteria provided by the World Health Organisation, a society could be considered an ‘Ageing Society’ if 7 to 14% of its population of the total population is 65 years or more. If out of the total population 14% population is way above 65 years, then that society is recognized as a ‘Super Ageing Society’. If however, 20% and more population in a total population of a society is above 65 years, then it is termed as ‘Hyper Aged Society‘.
A fear has been expressed in a report published by the ‘China Association of Social Security’, that China has already been in the category of the ‘Ageing Society‘ since the year 2000, and now it is moving towards a ‘Hyper Aged Society‘. Zheng Gongcheng, who heads the organization, has expressed that to meet this challenge of the ageing population is troubling China. Although the services and infrastructure for the care of the aged are developing, there still remains a big imbalance, says Zheng.
The Chinese Government has given indications to introduce new schemes and facilities to address this issue of the increasing aged population. This includes improvement in the health care services as well as increase in the pension coverage. Apart from this, certain provinces in China have started providing special concessions to workers to take care of the elderly. Accordingly, provisions are being made to grant 10 to 20 days leave with full pay for the workers to look after the elderly guardians.
In spite of this, the local scholars and researchers have indicated that in times to come, the care of the elderly in China, could prove to be a major internal issue.