China has over 230 million seniors, making it an ageing society under global standards

An elderly woman checking her money at a market in Beijing, on July 10, 2017.
An elderly woman checking her money at a market in Beijing, on July 10, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING - There were 230.8 million elderly people aged 60 or above in China at the end of 2016, comprising 16.7 per cent of the total population, according to Xinhua news agency.

According to international standards, a country or region is considered to be an ageing society when the number of people who are 60 years old or above reaches 10 per cent of more.

Of the 230.8 million senior citizens, 150.03 million of them were aged 65 or above, or 10.8 per cent of the total population, according to a report released by the country's Ministry of Civil Affairs, Xinhua reported.

At the end of 2016, China had 140,000 nursing homes with a total of more than 7.3 million beds. Year-on-year increase in the number of nursing homes and beds was 20.7 per cent and 8.6 per cent, respectively.

However, for every 1,000 elderly people, there are only 31.6 beds available, according to Xinhua.