Like the French, the Chinese against increasing retirement age
This is the government's likely response to the effects of the rapidly aging population on the welfare system. Survey: 74% of respondents want retirement under 55; only 6% accept it over 61. Reform to raise the retirement age to 65 under consideration: it would have strong social and economic effects.
Beijing (AsiaNews) - Most Chinese do not want to retire later in life: however, the government is likely to intervene in this reard to curb the economic and social effects of an aging population. According to a recent Life Times survey, published by Nikkei Asia, 74 percent of respondents think it is okay to retire from work before age 55 and only 6 percent over 61.
The Chinese mood is not disimilar to many French people who have staged protests against the reform that is expected to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64. This was also demonstrated by the massive protests in February, when thousands of retirees protested in Wuhan (Hubei) and Dalian (Liaoning) over cuts decided by provincial authorities to their health benefits.
Employees in China today retire at 60 and women at 55. The national average retirement age is 54, 11 less than in advanced countries.
The problem for a Chinese society aging at a very rapid rate is that it will have less labor to push the economy and pay those already retired. Right now in China there are 2.26 workers contributing to an elderly person's allowance: it is estimated that within 20 years there will be 1.25.
Estimates are that within the next 10 years about 228 million Chinese will retire. The government is studying a possible response so as not to endanger the welfare system. The one most considered involves retirement for everyone at age 65 in the next 30 years.
As in the West, lengthening a person's working life has two main implications: the first is that there will be fewer grandparents to support and help young families with children. The second is that there will be fewer and fewer jobs for those entering the labor market-a problem in China, where youth unemployment is nearly 19 percent.