U.S. Advocacy Group Unveils Action Plan to Address Aging Crisis

As the aging population has become a major concern in the developed world, a U.S. advocacy group on Wednesday rolled out an action plan aimed at transforming the “aging crisis” into prosperity.

The Global Coalition on Aging, launched by a group of American business titans including Intel, Bank of America, Pfizer and others to spur global awareness about aging, unveiled a plan called “Global Principles on Population Aging,” and called on governments, corporations and other stakeholders to adopt these principles.

“Transforming the worldwide ‘aging crisis’ into an opportunity to drive global economic growth requires a fundamental shift in the policies and priorities of governments, corporations, NGOs and other stakeholders,” the group said in a statement.

The plan represents seven core values “to guide the necessary changes businesses, governments, communities and individuals must undertake to maximize the opportunities of population aging,” the statement said.

The principles include statements advocating public-private cooperation in the development of solutions, as well as the adoption of a holistic, optimistic view of aging. They focus on four core areas including technology, innovation and biomedical research; health and wellness; education and work; and financial security.

“This unalterable demographic shift is already challenging our traditional institutions that as designed can only accommodate a fraction of the aging community they now serve,” said Michael Hodin, Executive Director of the Global Coalition on Aging. “These principles — the product of collaboration among our member companies — invite all stakeholders to address the demographic realities of our changing society.”

Increased longevity and declines in fertility rates are creating the global shift towards aging societies. The 65 and older population in the G20 countries is projected to increase by 124 percent between 2000 and 2030, according to the group. Worldwide, this age group is projected to grow to nearly 2 billion, more than doubling its share of the global population between 1950 and 2050, with annual growth rates of 2.4 percent in developed countries and 3 percent in the developing world between 2000 and 2050.

Source: People's Daily/Xinhua

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