China's zooming economy may feel the crunch in coming years as its workforce ages and productivity slips, potentially dragging down the global economy, according to a recent study.
In a worst-case scenario, economic growth in China could drop to less than 1% by 2030, according to a U.S. Federal Reserve study. That's after robust GDP growth that averaged 10% a year over the last decade.
Some slowdown is inevitable, the study said. The "rapid growth rates" that have boosted the fortunes of millions of people in China cannot be sustained forever, wrote Jane Haltmaier, a senior advisor at the Fed.
"The question is thus not whether the Chinese conomy will slow," she said, but "by when and by how much."
Haltmaier said that two factors affected GDP growth: a rise in employment and an uptick in productivity.
"China faces challenges in both these categories," she wrote.
The United Nations has forecast that the population of working adults in China will start to decline before 2020 and nearly 25% of its workforce will be older than 60.