The Pew Research Center recently conducted a global survey whose respondents designated China as the world’s leading economic power, narrowly edging out the USA. While surveys measure opinion and not economic reality, one wonders if the impression of an irresistible juggernaut is way overdone, just as Japan’s boom was overplayed in the media a generation ago.
China is ageing. Rapidly. The percentage of seniors in its population will nearly double in the next twenty years, from 9 percent to 17 percent. As its workforce matures, the number of young, energetic and trainable employees entering the labor market will shrink, while China’s medical and pension costs will rise. This is the very predictable consequence of the “one child” policy the country’s Communist government has enforced for the past thirty years. But very few people seem to be paying attention.
This pheonomenon has powerful implications for China’s future prospects as a military and economic power.
Read more at The Japan Times.