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China, EU focus on social security schemes
By Tan Yingzi (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-10-19 11:05

Establishing a multi-tier pension system may be better at reducing investment risks of pensioners, especially during a financial crisis, experts at the two-day European Union-China high-level roundtable on social security concluded on Friday.

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The roundtable, organized by the EU-China Social Security Project, is one of the flagship cooperation projects between the two sides.

At the fourth roundtable talks in Stockholm last week, officials and experts discussed how to manage social security in periods of economic uncertainty, especially the impact of the global economic downturn on the labor markets and on individual pension accounts.

"Social polices should be seen as a productive factor, not as a luxury we can afford only during the good years," said Xavier Prats Monne, Director for Employment, Lisbon Strategy and International Affairs, European Commission.

"The current financial crisis has seriously hit the global social society system and the total loss of various pension funds is about $ 5.5 trillion," Hu Xiaoyi, vice minister of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (MHRSS) said at the meeting.

China started to establish a social security system in 1996. It is expected to cover all urban and rural residents by 2020.

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