AGEING ASIA: The balance of ageing is shifting to Asia by 2030.
AGEING ASIA: The balance of ageing is shifting to Asia by 2030. ThinkStock

Ageing Asia 'target-rich' for Australia

AS 60% of the world's population aged 65 and over will by 2030 be living in Asia, business opportunities across a range of sectors will open up for Australia.

It's the fastest growing market in the world Deloitte's Voice of Asia reports, with the current over-65 population of 365 million growing to more than 520 million by 2027.

According to Deloitte, that makes Asia a "target-rich" environment, providing strong business opportunities for Australia.

Deputy managing partner for Deloitte Asia Pacific, Ian Thatcher noted: "(and) we are also very well positioned to sell into the changing growth dynamic in Asia.

"Having ridden a massive wave with China and mining, the coming potential out of Asia will lie more in other countries and other sectors.

"Australian businesses in tourism, agribusiness, health care, education and wealth management will all see a tailwind of Asian demand in the years ahead." 

The report also identifies some growth factors that while Australia will have its own ageing population challenges, those challenges will be much larger still in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand and New Zealand - as well as in China itself.

"That means that group of six nations, which together with Japan account for almost half of all Australia's merchandise exports, will have to deftly navigate growth opportunities over the coming decade," Deloitte's economists note."

Tsuyoshi Oyama, Deloitte Japan economist, said in Japan there are opportunities beyond health care.

"Rapid ageing in the Japanese population has changed the needs of people and the way businesses satisfy them. "

There has been increasing demand in sectors such as nursing, consumer goods for the elderly, age-appropriate housing and social infrastructure, as well as asset management and insurance." 

India is seen as being well positioned to take economic advantage of the demographic change.

"Following the rise of Japan and then China in decades past, India will drive the third great wave of Asia's growth," Deloitte's Voice of Asia identifes.

"Its potential workforce is set to rise from 885 million people today to 1.08 billion people in the next twenty years, and it will remain above a billion people for half a century."

Anis Chakravarty, Deloitte India economist explained further; "India will account for more than half of the increase in Asia's workforce in the coming decade, but this isn't just a story of more workers: these new workers will be much better trained and educated than the existing Indian workforce, and there will be rising economic potential coming alongside that, thanks to an increased share of women in the workforce, as well as an increased ability and interest in working for longer.

"The consequences for businesses are huge." 

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