Hong Kong is a small, densely settled Special Administrative Region of China (the HKSAR). Its 2014 mid-year population of some 7.3 million persons had a median age of 42.8 years, with 14.7% aged 65 and, importantly, 4.4% aged over 80 (Census and Statistics Department, 2015a). These percentages of older persons have increased considerably over the past 30 years, as Hong Kong's population has aged demographically, and the HKSAR now also has one of the lowest fertility rates in the world. It faces its most rapid period of population ageing over the next 20 years, with the age 65-plus group set to comprise almost 23% of the ‘usually resident’ population by 2024 and 30% in 2034, when the median age will be 50. Indeed, United Nations projections indicate that the HKSAR will probably be the sixth oldest territory in the world by 2050, with a median age of almost 53 years (UNDESA, 2015), 10 years older than at present. Clearly, therefore, with a considerable population that is already elderly and the likelihood of very considerable future increase in the proportion of older persons, questions of age-friendliness on all the main domains of the World Health Organization (WHO)'s (2007a, 2007b) age-friendly cities and communities (AFCC) model are of prime consideration as well as certain local additional AFCC characteristics (Wong et al, 2015, 2017). By August 2017, ten HKSAR districts had embarked on the AFCC commitments and received recognition from the WHO by being included in its list of AFCC communities. Hong Kong is also one of 15 countries and territories involved in pilot testing a set of indicators of age-friendliness, under the WHO Kobe Centre for Health Development (WHO, 2015).
Hong Kong is a highly urbanised small territory of only 1,100 square kilometres and, while about 40% of the HKSAR comprises protected country parks, geographical reasons mean that the population is concentrated in only about 25% of the land area. Therefore, overall population density is among the highest in the world, at 6,690 per square kilometer in 2014. In places such as Kwun Tong, the most densely populated district and located in Kowloon, density reaches 57,250 persons per square kilometer (Hong Kong Government, 2015).