Jakarta (ANTARA) - The government is formulating a policy for realizing an independent, healthy, and respectable elderly population, National Development Planning Minister and National Development Planning Board (Bappenas) head Suharso Monoarfa has said.

"The population health in 2050 is predicted to improve and thus have an impact on increasing the elderly population number," Monoarfa said at the third plenary meeting of the Statistical Society Forum (FMS), according to a post on his official Instagram handle @suharsomonoarfa, which was accessed from here on Tuesday.

Some of the government's policy directions regarding the elderly population include preparing for social and economic retirement.

The direction involves extending the retirement age for all workers from the current 58 years and preventing the crowding out effect, the minister informed.

Then, the government will optimize new potential sources of economic growth from the elderly population by making them both consumers and producers, which is also known as the silver economy, he added.

"One of which is expanding suitable job opportunities for older workers," Monoarfa said.

The government will direct the policy at the elderly population that maintains sustainable consumption patterns to prevent a surge in health spending in old age and improve human resource investment when young.

Furthermore, he said, a longer life expectancy must be supported by a healthy life expectancy, thereby increasing productivity.

According to him, longer life expectancy encourages more savings, with the assumption that social protection already covers retirement benefits and long-term care for most of the elderly population.

"This was applied in Japan and South Korea in the 1990s and in Europe in the 1900s," he said.

There are eight Indonesian provinces that are currently experiencing population aging, according to the National Population and Family Planning Board (BKKBN).

According to the agency’s data, the eight provinces are Yogyakarta, East Java, Central Java, North Sulawesi, Bali, South Sulawesi, Lampung, and West Java.

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Translator: M Alatas, Kenzu
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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