Silver ageing market in China worth US$27 billion

China should improve its “silver” industry by enhancing gerontechnology and expanding the market for the elderly according to this article in Eastday.

Wang Jiyong, vice chairperson of the China Silver Industry Association (CSIA) said at a forum on silver industry and gerontechnology. “The value of the market for the elderly has exceeded 170 billion yuan (US$26,743 millon), but only 120 billion yuan worth goods can be found on the market,”

“It’s an embarrassing situation, the huge market demand and seriously inadequate supply of goods and services for the elderly,” Wang said. He suggested companies cooperate more with universities to develop applicable gerontechnology and provide more goods and services.

China has now more than 177 million people aged 60 or above, and the number is predicted to reach 450 million by the middle of the century, according to the statistics from the sixth national census.

China must establish a comprehensive insurance system for the elderly, said Ding Ningning, an expert with the State Council Development Research Center.

Ding said China’s social insurance systems have covered the majority of its population, but the coverage of the elderly is generally very low, especially for the low-income urban elderly and the rural left-behind elderly, who “are in the most need.”

Ding also suggested to raising the retirement age to 65 for both men and women. Currently, men usually are required to retire at 60 and women at 55.