The Communist Party of China Central Committee and the Chinese cabinet, the State Council, have jointly unveiled a medium- and long-term plan for responding proactively to population aging.
The plan requires establishing the basic institutional framework for tackling population aging by 2022. By the middle of the century, a mature institutional arrangement should be put into place, reported Xinhua News Agency.
The plan details the tasks to be undertaken to respond to population aging across five aspects:
improving the national income distribution system, steadily increasing pension reserves and establishing a fairer and more sustainable social security system;
improving the effective supply of labour in an aging society, which requires improving the quality of entrants to the labour force, establishing a lifelong learning system for senior citizens, and striving to achieve fuller employment and create better quality jobs;
implementing a high-quality health service system including health education, disease prevention and treatment, rehabilitation nursing, long-term nursing and hospice care;
applying technology including strengthening the development of assistive technologies for senior citizens;
fostering a social environment in which senior citizens are respected, cared for, and live happily in their later years. The legal system will be improved to protect the lawful rights and interests of senior citizens.
China’s population, currently estimated at 1.39bn, is set to peak at 1.44bn in 2029. Statistics show there were over 249m people aged 60 or above in China at the end of 2018, accounting for nearly 18% of the total population. The ratio of elderly people is expected to reach 25% by 2035.