The effects of changing age structure on economic growth


XIAO Yiping;YANG Yanlin


Economics and Management School of Wuhan University;The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill;Center for Economic Development Research, Wuhan University;Center for Population Resources and Environmental Economy Research, Wuhan University


Using the 1987–2015 census data of China, this paper studies the effects of changes in demographic age structure on economic growth. We use fixed effect models for panel data to investigate the impact of the size and age composition of working-age population on economic growth. The result shows that one percentage-point increase in the working-age population ratio would lead to a 1.9% increase in GDP per capita, and one percentage-point increase in the share of the population at prime ages would lead to a 1.7% increase in GDP per capita. Estimating the contribution of changes in age structure to China’s economic growth, the result suggests that during the 1987–2015 period, changes in age structure contribute to 14.69% of China’s economic growth. It is forecasted that China’s demographic dividend window would be closed during the period of 2015–2020. Finally, we decompose the effect of changes in age structure on economic growth, demonstrating that age structure affects economic growth mainly through the improvement of the efficiency of production factors, the accumulation of human capital, and the enhancement of employment.


age structure;working-age population;prime-age labor;economic growth


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Total: 22 articles

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