Conference on Demographic Change and Social Security Reform

Event: Social Justice and Trade Unions

Together with the Shanghai Administration Institute, FES Shanghai held a conference on demographic change and reform of social security systems on November 29th and 30th in Shanghai. The conference focused on the new challenges posed by demographic change and on social security issues such as fertility promotion policies, pension reform and care for the elderly.


At present, two major trends are emerging in China, namely the deep ageing of the population and the declining willingness of families to have children. This has long-term implications for the country's economic and social development, and places direct demands on the social security and service system. As one of the most developed cities in China and the city with the highest degree of ageing and lowest fertility intentions, Shanghai has undertaken a series of pioneering explorations in dealing with these issues.

Germany was the first country in the world to establish a social security system and has a relatively well-developed social welfare system. As a developed European country, Germany encountered the challenges of demographic change much earlier in the modernization process. In response to the problems caused by demographic change, Germany has accumulated a series of experiences to draw on through reforms in various areas such as tax reduction, social welfare, employment support and community solidarity.

Through two half days of intensive exchanges, both sides recognized that demographic change is a common challenge for both countries. The presentation and comparison of the current state of demographic development and policies to deal with it in both countries facilitated a reflection on their own social policies. The discussions touched on many detailed issues in policy formulation and implementation, which undoubtedly contributed to the common progress of social policies on both sides.

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