The Aging Population: Economic Growth and Global Competitiveness

Old and young audience members listen as President Barack Obama speaks at the Town Hall Education Arts and Recreation Campus (THEARC) theater in Washington, June 21, 2010. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Robert D. Hormats serves as Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment.

On Tuesday, February 14, the Council on Foreign Relations is holding a meeting on the “The U.S. Aging Population as an Economic Growth Driver for Global Competitiveness.” The event is timely. Standard & Poor’s reports that “No other force is likely to shape the future of national economic health, public finances and policy-making as the irreversible rate at which the world”s population is aging.”

Hence, it’s vital that we create opportunities to enable older persons to contribute to their economies and communities in increasingly effective and productive ways. This will require new policies and innovations that promote healthy aging, including advances in medicine, continued learning, and cultural norms regarding aging. As population aging is elevated to the global agenda, the countries that capitalize on the increasing percentage of older adults, and are able to increasingly… more »