Improbable as it may seem, a survey by a multinational insurance
firm found that many Chinese people regard retirement as an
"active, financially favorable new life".
Results of the survey, compiled by AXA-Minmentals Assurance, a
Sino-French joint venture insurance company in Shanghai, showed
that Chinese people's optimism and voluntarism toward retirement is
"quite similar" with that of the West, according to Jamie McCarry,
chief executive officer of AXA-Minmentals.
"Chinese people are also more active and optimistic toward
retirement compared with other countries in Asia" while sharing
similar family values and respect for elderly people, McCarry said
yesterday at a press briefing to announce results of the
The survey named "AXA Retirement Scope" was carried out in 16 of
the world's major industrialized countries with a total sample of
In the 17-day China survey, AXA interviewed 1,003 working people
aged above 25, and 999 retirees aged under 75 years in five of the
largest Chinese cities, Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Tianjin and
People in China are happy, especially in big cities such as
Shanghai and Tianjin, according to the survey.
Eight out of 10 people interviewed said they were happy or very
happy. They said their happiness was linked to income and good
Three-quarters of the working people and two-thirds of the
retirees said their income would be sufficient to support their
lifestyle after retirement, topping other countries around the
They believed their living standard and quality of life would be
improved after retirement because of China's consistent strong
Although enjoying sufficient retirement income, few retired
Chinese showed interest in leisure and holidays. They focused more
on family affairs and taking care of their health.
The survey showed the working set save an average of 625 yuan
(US$80) per month for retirement, showing a realization of the
importance of financial planning.
The average personal monthly pension income for retirees is 966
About one-third of the working set begin to prepare for their
retirement at 37 years old on average, while the retirees prepared
for it much later, at 47.
Government remains the cornerstone of the retirement system for
three-fourths of working people and nearly nine out of 10
"But the idea of individual responsibility for retirement income
is growing faster in China," said McCarry.
Two-thirds of working people said the individual should bear
some responsibility, while one-third of retirees agreed.
(China Daily March 14, 2007)