Asia’s demographic dividend is coming to an end and to sustain economic growth, therefore, investment and productivity will need to rise. An expanding workforce drives up growth, and when it falls the economy suffers.
In this newsletter from the HSBC they show that in Asia, demographics have been favourable for many years, helping to explain China’s impressive run for three decades and India’s more recent surge. Japan, however, serves as a reminder that such sweet spot may not last. Already in five years, China’s workforce could begin to contract, about the same time as in Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore. Thailand is up next, with its demographics turning in ten years. Elsewhere, the workforce will still expand, but at a slowing pace — even in India and the Philippines that have the region’s youngest populations.
BMW has one of the best documented cases of how a business can offset these effects through the creation of an age-friendly workplace.