With a median population age of around 27, India’s relatively young demographic is widely seen as an economic asset, giving the country an edge over its Asian peers, many of which are aging fast.
But analysts warn that it’s only a matter of time before South Asia’s most populous nation begins to grow old and the country is by many accounts unprepared for this statistical shift.
India’s 60-and-over population is currently estimated at 100 million – equivalent to the size of the U.K. and Canadian populations combined – and projected to reach 240 million by 2050.
According to projections by the Census of India, the dependency ratio of India’s seniors will reach 19.7 percent by 2050, nearly triple that of 2001, putting the number of dependent seniors on par with the number of dependent children.
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