Aging Chinese Population Spells A Future Housing Bust

Predicting the post-Olympics housing market for the immediate future would be difficult. But in the long-term, when China faces an aging population, the housing boom now may seem like a golden time. Translated by CDT from Oriental Morning Post via Sina:

“Population bonus,” the abundant supply of working-age population in a country, is contributing 27% to China’s per capital GDP growth, said Cai Fang, director of the population and labor economics institute with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. But with an aging population in China, the population bonus will be exhausted by 2013.

Chinese policy makers are increasingly aware that China not only needs to worry about the overgrowth of population, but also about a changing demographic, especially when China’s baby boomers enter retirement age. Now, these people born in the 1960s and 1970s were or have been at the stage in their lives of getting married and buying homes late last century and early this one. But since 1990, China’s birth rate has been decreasing. According to the 2000 census, there were 69 million of those aged 0-4 years old, half the number for the range aged 10-14.

Many worry that while the baby boomers have pushed up the housing market over the last decade, China will soon be dealing with dwindling demand from the new generation coming of age but with a dramatically small population scale. And this will mean a slipping real estate market and dipping house prices.

August 30, 2008 2:03 PM
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Categories: Economy, Society