Taps Coogan – January 2nd, 2023
Enjoy The Sounding Line? Click here to subscribe for free.
What better chart to start 2023 than the following, via Alf, which shows China’s now declining population and the UN forecast for its continued decline until 2100.
As we noted back in 2022, China’s population has likely peaked and begun a process of decline that will see the number of working age Chinese fall below levels last since in the 1950s unless trends change.
China is not the only country in this position, many East Asian and European countries now have declining populations, but China is one of the few that failed to make the transition to ‘upper income’ before succumbing to demographic decline. Despite manufactured narratives to the contrary, China’s GDP-per-capita is still lower than in Kazakhstan, Mexico, or Malaysia. Outside of strips of coastal prosperity, there are still hundreds of millions of Chinese living at Sub-Saharan poverty levels.
How the CCP will manage to maintain social cohesion in a new era of near-zero headline growth and widespread ‘working poverty’ remains to be seen.