"2016 Population By-census Thematic Report: Older Persons" published
Published date: 9 March 2018
The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) published today (March 9) the publication "2016 Population By-census Thematic Report: Older Persons", providing detailed statistics of the characteristics of older persons in 2016.
According to the results of the 2016 Population By-census, there were a total of 1 163 153 older persons in Hong Kong in 2016, representing an increase of 310 357 (36.4%) from 2006. Older persons in this report refers to people aged 65 and over.
The ageing trend in the population continued. The proportion of older persons in the total population rose from 12.4% in 2006 to 15.9% in 2016. Among older persons in 2016, 616 530 (53.0%) were aged 65 to 74, 206 374 (17.7%) were aged 75 to 79 and 340 249 (29.3%) were aged 80 and over. The number of persons aged 80 and over increased substantially by 66.7% over the past decade. In 2006, there were only 204 148 persons aged 80 and over.
Among older persons in 2016, 91.9% were living in domestic households, while the remaining 8.1% were living in non-domestic households (i.e. living in homes for the aged, hospitals and penal institutions, etc.). There were 152 536 older persons living alone, constituting 13.1% of the overall population of older persons. In addition, 293 308 (25.2%) older persons were living with spouse only, 337 623 (29.0%) were living with spouse and children, and 226 801 (19.5%) were living with children only.
As compared with 10 years ago, the proportion of older persons living with children (including those living with spouse and children and those living with children only) dropped from 53.4% in 2006 to 48.5% in 2016. On the contrary, the proportions of older persons living with spouse only and those living alone rose by 4.0 and 1.5 percentage points respectively over the same period.
The number of domestic households with older persons only (such as older persons living alone and households composed of couples of older persons only) surged as population ageing continued. In 2016, there were 300 906 domestic households with all members (other than foreign domestic helpers) being older persons, which was 67.4% higher than the figure of 179 702 in 2006. Among these households, 39 609 households had foreign domestic helpers, which was about triple the figure in 2006 (12 807), reflecting the growing trend of hiring foreign domestic helpers to take care of older persons.
Among older persons living in domestic households in 2016, the proportions of those living in public rental housing, subsidised home ownership housing and private permanent housing were 36.7%, 19.2% and 42.8% respectively. Most of the older persons (77.9%) in private permanent housing were living in owner-occupier households, among which a high proportion (83.9%) were without mortgage payment or loan repayment.
The education level of the new generation of older persons was improving. The proportion of older persons with secondary or higher education increased considerably from 25.0% in 2006 to 39.6% in 2016. In addition, the proportion of older persons with post-secondary education also increased from 6.6% in 2006 to 9.5% in 2016.
With the increasing level of educational attainment and the improving health conditions of older persons, the number of working older persons increased by more than one-fold over the past 10 years, from 59 256 in 2006 to 125 177 in 2016. The increase was mainly contributed by the surge in the number of working older persons in the age group 65 to 74 from 47 377 in 2006 to 112 104 in 2016, representing an increase of 136.6%. A large proportion of the working older persons were engaged in "elementary occupations" (32.0%). On the other hand, the proportion of working older persons engaged in the three higher-skilled occupational groups, viz. "managers and administrators", "professionals" and "associate professionals" was 31.8% in 2016.
The median monthly domestic household income of domestic households with older persons only was $6,020 in 2016, representing a significant increase of 77.1% when compared with $3,400 in 2006. Analysed by source of income, the median monthly domestic household income of older persons only households with employment income increased by 53.1%, from $8,000 in 2006 to $12,250 in 2016; while that of older persons only households without employment income increased at a much higher rate of 80.6%, from $3,200 to $5,780 over the same period. The significant increase in income among older persons only households without employment income was partly caused by the increase in cash social benefits given out by the Government, including the Old Age Living Allowance introduced in 2013 to support older persons who are in need of financial support.
In 2016, analysed by the proportion of older persons to the total population in each district, Kwun Tong District and Wong Tai Sin District ranked top in terms of the proportion of its population being older persons (both at 17.2%), followed by Kwai Tsing District (16.7%), Southern District (16.6%), and Eastern District (16.6%), while Tsuen Wan District ranked last at 14.6%.
The report contains more detailed statistics of the characteristics of older persons. Users can download the report free of charge at the thematic website of the 2016 Population By-census (www.bycensus2016.gov.hk/en/bc-articles.html) and the website of the C&SD (www.censtatd.gov.hk/hkstat/sub/sp459.jsp).
Enquiries about this report and other results of the 2016 Population By-census can be directed to the 2016 Population By-census Office of the C&SD (Tel: 3547 1800, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Last revision date: 9 March 2018