Brain Food: Stat of the month - China's ageing problem - 200m - The number of Chinese projected to be over 60 in 2025

China is the oldest country in the world, with 130 million people over the age of 60. This is a tenth of its population, the highest ratio anywhere. And the over-60 age group will number 200 million by about 2025 and continue growing to comprise almost a third of China's population by 2050. This perspective underlines the urgency of China's march to industrialisation. There is a prime window of perhaps one or two generations for the nation to dramatically improve its fortunes. The trend also shows the urgent need for reform of the pension and healthcare systems. Some entrepreneurs are already onto this, generating value where state involvement is unable to fill market needs. Chen Bang's Aier Eyecare, for example, operates a chain of 30 clinics and hospitals that are thriving as the incidence of glaucoma, cataracts and other eye problems increases among China's ageing population.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

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