新婴儿潮一代

与世隔绝、没有工作的年轻人无论在世界哪个角落都令人忧虑。他们给发展中国家带来了实实在在的挑战,因为那里正发生着与西方二次大战后“婴儿潮”类似的快速人口膨胀。但出生在战后发达国家的婴儿潮一代现在已经临近退休,并且都享受到了前所未有的繁荣。而对于发展中国家10多亿12到24岁之间的年青人来讲,他们的未来还会这么美好吗?

所有发展中国家的政府都迫切需要找到投资和政策的最佳组合,以鼓励年轻人接受教育、寻找工作、保持健康、成家立业和行使公民权。这个问题解决得好,收益将会非常可观:快速增长的工作人口和大幅降低的赡养比例将使经济发展受益匪浅。有人认为在东亚地区,这种“人口优势”带来了超过四分之一的经济增长。

发展中国家已经对儿童进行了大规模投资,这些国家青年一代的教育和健康状况也因此有了大幅度提高。现在,发展中国家80%的儿童都接受小学教育,而1970年这一比例只有50%,同一时期内婴儿的死亡率也从超过10%下降到了6.5%。但时至今日,政府已不应再满足于单纯为儿童投资,而应该为新一代的年青人提供支持。

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