The story appears on

Page A2

May 4, 2011

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro

Population rise sparks changes

THE increasing number of people moving to the city is resulting in Shanghai placing more importance on their interests when formulating policy.

The city is home to 8.98 million non-locals, accounting for 39 percent of the city's 23.02 million residents, according to the sixth national census held last November.

The population of non-locals, mainly migrant workers, staying in the city for more than six months has increased by 159.08 percent from the 3.46 million in the last census in 2000, the Shanghai Statistics Bureau said yesterday.

Ren Yuan, a Fudan University professor, said the increase was helpful in two aspects - solving the city's labor shortage and alleviating the problems of a large aging population.

Though Shanghai has been considered an aging society, the proportion of people aged between 15 and 64 increased by 4.97 percent compared to 10 years ago, while the proportion of people older than 65 fell by 1.34 percent.

Shanghai has lowered its threshold for outsiders to apply for hukou, or permanent residency, and the increase in incomers below the age of 65 would help alleviate growing pressure on the city's pension pool given the rapid growth of Shanghai's aged population.

Though migrant workers in Shanghai also pay social insurance, their fund is independent from the pool of local residents.

"If the two pools can be merged or connected, the already in deficit pension pool will be injected with more funds," Ren said.

But the increase in the number of migrant workers also creates problems.

The city's financial budget, infrastructure, transport, housing and other aspects are all under heavier pressure.

In some suburban areas, such as Jiading District, non-locals already outnumber registered residents, and migrant workers, divided by their hometowns, have developed their own communities, local officials said.

The city's various resources also find it hard to cope when so many people arrive at once.

An official from one town in Jiading said that its primary schools had places for 200 children of migrant workers this fall, while their number was already more than 400.

Ren said Shanghai's capacity to cope with its population should be raised at the same pace as the increase.

But local authorities had underestimated the increasing pace of the population, which resulted in the construction of infrastructure or other facilities lagging behind, Ren said.

According to the statistics bureau, Shanghai people are moving out of downtown districts such as Jing'an, Luwan and Huangpu where the population of each is now less than 430,000, to districts such as Jiading, Baoshan, Minhang and the Pudong New Area.

Pudong has 5.04 million people while the other three are each home to more than a million people.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend