Life expectancy for Chinese to hit 75.8 years by 2015

Last Updated: Oct 19, 2012, 17:53 PM IST

Beijing: The average life expectancy for Chinese will reach 75.8 years by 2015, one year longer than last year`s average of 74.8, according to an official health care development plan.

Public health has improved since the last Five-Year Plan period (2006-2011), with significant progress made in multiple health care sectors, according to the 12th five-year plan for health care development published today.

The study comes as Chinese policy makers and economists were publicly debating about the financial burden of China`s expanding pension schemes.

The current pension system sets the retirement age for males at 60 and 55 for female government employees and 50 for female workers. Studies showed heavy opposition for any extension of retirement age.

According to estimates the China is already saddled with demographic crisis.
At present about 13.26 per cent of China`s population are aged 60 or above at present numbering about 177 million.

According to recent studies China will be saddled with over 440 million old people in the next four decades.

The increase of old people disrupting the demographic cycle was largely blamed on the one child policy being adopted for the past three decades.

China`s population was expected to hit 1.45 billion in 2020 from the current 1.34 billion, according to official media reports.

According to a joint study by the Bank of China and Deutsche Bank, China`s aging population will leave it with a shortfall of 18.3 trillion yuan (about USD 2.90 billion) in pension funds by 2013 and create a heavy fiscal burden for the country.