Bulletin – June Quarter 2016 China's Demographic Outlook Abstract

The significant increase in the working-age portion of China's population over recent decades was an important contributor to China's rapid economic growth. In coming decades, however, China's working-age population is expected to contract and the dependency ratio, which is the ratio of non-working-age to working-age population, is expected to increase substantially. Other things being equal, such demographic changes will have fiscal implications and tend to reduce the economy's potential growth rate. Scenarios presented in this article suggest that it appears inevitable that China's dependency ratio will rise and the working-age population will not increase from current levels. As such, the boost to economic growth provided by the demographic dividend of the past decades is not likely to be repeated.