Economic Costs of Absenteeism, Presenteeism and Early Retirement Due to Ill Health: A Focus on Jiangsu, China

Friday, June 22, 2018 - 1:30pm

Jiangsu is a province of China located along the eastern coast. With the Yellow Sea to its east, Jiangsu adjoins Anhui and Shandong provinces in the west and north respectively, with Zhejiang province and the city of Shanghai as its neighbours in the southeast. Its capital city is Nanjing. Jiangsu has a population of 7.9 million in 2015 representing about 6% of China’s population. It accounts for 10.8% of China’s Gross Regional Product of which the Tertiary sector represents 48.6%, Secondary sector 45.7% and Primary sector 5.7% (National Bureau of Statistics China 2016).

This report provides estimates of the economic cost due to productivity losses arising from absenteeism, presenteeism and early retirement due to ill health. For Jiangsu, these losses equate to a total of 5.3% of GDP in 2015, as shown in Table ES 1, increasing to 6.3% of GDP by 2030.

Treated as a separate economy, these estimates put Jiangsu below average for this group of nine countries, that includes some South East Asian and South American peers, as well as some upper income (and demographically mature) developed countries from other parts of the world. This is fractionally lower than for China nationally which is 5.4% for 2015 and 6.5% for 2030. The composition on the other hand is different. The impact of early retirement is higher while absenteeism and presentism is lower. The increase as a percentage of GDP is the one of the largest for this group of countries. Figure ES1 shows that the estimated increase between 2015 and 2030.