China has revealed that it wants to keep its population under 1.4 billion over the next four years signaling its intentions to stick with its tight birth control policies.
The 12th Five-Year Plan on the country's population development issued by the State Council said that China had more than 1.34 billion people by the end of 2011.
It said that the number of people aged 60 and older would rise to over 200 million in the next five years, The China Daily reports.
According to the report, it is expected that the size of the labor force will peak during the next five years and will start dwindling slowly and steadily afterwards.
Until then, China will see a rise in its dependency ratio - the ratio of those outside the labor force, such as seniors and children, compared to those in it, experts said.
According to Yuan Xin, a professor at Nankai University's population and development institute in Tianjin, given a steady number of children, China's rising dependency ratio is prompted mainly by a sharply rising number of the old.