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China to gradually postpone statutory retirement age

Updated: Oct 15,2015 1:55 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China will gradually postpone its statutory retirement age, as its workforce retires the earliest in the world, said an official on Oct 14.

The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security is set to publicize a reform plan on postponing the statutory retirement age, said minister Yin Weimin.

According to Yin, the current policy was formulated in the early 1950s when average life expectancy was less than 50.

With average life expectancy due to surpass 70, the retirement policy seems to be out of date and “unreasonable,” Yin said.

Currently, people retire aged no more than 55, compared to the mid-60s of many other countries, Yin noted.

The reform plan will postpone the retirement age “step by step until it reaches a reasonable level,” according to Yin.

China has 210 million people aged 60 or above, accounting for 15.5 percent of the population. It is estimated that by 2020, this section of society will make up 19.3 percent of the population, and 38.6 percent in 2050.

This will weigh heavy on government endowment insurance expenditure, as individual pensions have increased from 700 yuan ($110.36) 10 years ago to more than 2,000 yuan currently.

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