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Countries With Aging Populations

The world is rapidly aging. A whopping two billion people will be 60 years and older by 2050, more than triple the number in 2000, according to the World Health Organization.

This demographic change has major implications for the global economy. Some of the world's biggest economies are facing rising health-care costs, a shrinking workforce, higher pension costs and diminishing fertility rates. Many countries have already begun adapting to their increasingly aging populations by raising the retirement age, reducing pension benefits and spending more on elderly care.

We've come up with a list of countries with the starkest gap between the number of old and the number of young. We calculated the number of people aged 65 and older for every person 14 years and younger. We’ve also provided statistics on the percentage of the total population aged 65 and above as well as the percentage aged 14 years and below.

The population numbers are from the CIA World Factbook, while we used organizations such as the World Bank, United Nations (UN), and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to illustrate demographic trends.

So, which countries have the biggest gap between old and young? Click ahead to find out.

By Rajeshni Naidu-Ghelani(First posted Jan. 23, 2012, updated Oct. 30, 2012)

Photo: Camille Tokerud Photography | Getty Images