MANILA - The number of people aged 60 and above in the Philippines is expected to grow this year, latest projections from the Commission on Population (POPCOM) show.
The number of elderly Filipinos or those over 60 years old is projected to increase by 0.23 percent over 2017 and will most likely be over 8 million Filipino senior citizens by the end of the year, POPCOM said.
This will constitute 8.2 percent of the country's total population. Of this figure, 5 million will be aged 65 and older or 4.7 percent of the country's population.
The estimate places the Philippines closer to having an aging population, which is marked by at least 7 percent of the population aged 65 years or older.
"By year-end 2018 there will be 8,013,059 Filipinos over 60, constituting 8.2% of Filipinos. Of this group, 5,082,049 will be 65 and older. Most countries are considered aging if they have at least 7% of the population over 65 years old," POPCOM said in a press statement.
An aging population puts a heavy burden on the country's workforce, a problem that has plagued developed countries such as Japan, Italy, and Germany.
Many predictions in previous years had said that the Philippines is far from having an aging population as the country is expected to get a boost from a "young population."
In 2014, for instance, a study by Moody’s Investors Service showed that the Philippines will continue to enjoy the benefits of a young population at least until 2030.
The study predicted that the percentage of elderly people (65 and above) in the Philippines will most likely grow to 4.9 percent by 2020; 5.6 percent by 2025 and 6.3 percent by 2030.