China Grays

Half a century ago in China’s Rudong county, communist officials heeded the government warnings about overpopulation and pioneered a 1-child policy a decade before it went national in 1979.

Today, it’s a window on China’s demographic future, according to this Bloomberg News article. Almost 30% of the 1 million people in the county are 60+ (2X the national average). 

Nationwide, the number of workers ages 15 to 59 will fall by 61 million in 25 years. “That’s about the equivalent of losing the combined working populations of the UK and France,” the article notes.

The Quote: “China is quickly turning gray on an unprecedented scale in human history, and the Chinese government, even the whole Chinese society, is not prepared for it. In many places, including my hometown in western Hunan, it’s hard to find a young man in his 20s or 30s,” said Yi Fuxian, an author who’s critical of the 1-child policy.


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