Hong Kong’s ageing population is a rapidly approaching and growing challenge that will stick around for decades.
According to the latest projections from the Census and Statistics Department, the region’s population will grow in the next 20-30 years but at a slow pace, from 7.2 million at the third quarter of 2013 to 8.5 million in 2041. When it comes to demographics, residents aged 65 and above will grow from 1 million in 2013 to 2.6 million in 2041.
That means that in 2041, one in every three people will be elders, up from the current ratio of one in seven. The median age by then would also go up to 52, versus 43 today.
When it comes to medical insurance, Hong Kong is a goldmine. They have one of the best healthcare systems in the world, but there is still so much room for improvement. This means getting the right health coverage for yourself and the family is not only crucial; it’s a must.
As a means to handle this looming ageing ‘problem’, the HK government said they will continue to increase budget allocations for the healthcare sector. In the region’s 2015-2016 budget, the Hospital Authority will receive $49 billion, an increase of almost 50%.
There’s also the looming problem of housing. Experts are calling for a revision of the current housing strategy. Much of Hong Kong is focused on public rental housing, but the aging baby boomers will need a place to retire to.
Low-income homeownership across the region would make it self-financing, which can only be a good thing for the soon-to-be elderly who may have not saved a lot. This, along with an affordable and reliable health care plan, will make it easier for the ageing baby boomers to live comfortably in their golden years.
HK’s baby boomer generation helped the special administrative region become what it is today, a major global trade and financial centre. It’s only right that they enjoy the fruits of their labour come their senior years.