Press Room
Impact on Markets of Aging Population in Taiwan, Other Asian Countries Becoming Increasingly Evident
January 20, 2009
According to the Taipei-based Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC), Taiwan will officially become an aged society in 11 years. Furthermore, as the average population growth rate is gradually slowing down, MIC forecasts that by 2050 Taiwan will be a super-aged society as the percentage of older people in the overall population will increase to 35.9%. Enterprises will have to carefully observe the market demand developments created by these population changes, as well as changes in terms of production capabilities and consumption power, in order to develop new economic value.

By 2020, older people are expected to account for 16.2% of the total population in Taiwan. In Asia, only Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore are expected to have higher ratios. By 2050, almost all of the major countries in Asia are expected to become aged societies, with the exception of the Philippines. More than half of Asian countries will become super-aged societies, with Taiwan being one of them.

The WHO (World Health Organization) classifies people over the age of 65 as older people. If older people's share of the total population exceeds 14%, a society is defined as an aged society; if the share exceeds 21% it is classified as a super-aged society. According to forecasts based on population statistics of Taiwan's Council for Economic Planning and Development and marriage and birthrate statistics, in 2031 Taiwan's population will start to decline. The ratio of older people is expected to reach 16.2% by 2020, officially making Taiwan an aged society. This share will increase to 35.9% by 2050.

Forecasts show that the average population growth slowdown in Asian countries in the coming 40 years will be more significant than in the Americas. The average growth rate in Asia by the year 2050 is expected to be only 0.03%, much lower than the 0.45% forecasted for the Americas. According to MIC Consultant Wen-tang Chen, "Asia, with its large population, has been the growth driver for the global economy. The changes in population will cause the labor force in Asia to weaken, while economic growth and market scale will also decline; production and consumption power will decrease. Businesses will have to confront this trend head-on, and they have to create new economic value for market demand in these aged societies."

Europe and Japan have the most rapidly aging populations in the world. Aged societies will lead to different lifestyle patterns, and lead to changes in economic activities and healthcare. With other Asian countries also facing the prospect of becoming aged societies, these countries should keep a close eye on the evolving market demand of aged populations in Japan and Europe. Learning from experiences in these regions will help companies in Asia to take advantage of market opportunities generated by aging populations.



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About MIC

Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC), based in Taipei, Taiwan, was founded in 1987. MIC is Taiwan's premier IT industry research and consulting firm providing intelligence, in-depth analysis, and strategic consulting services on global IT product and technology trends, focusing on markets and industries in Asia-Pacific. MIC is part of the Institute for Information Industry.