South Korea Faces Incoming Population Disaster

Reports reveal the expected births per woman in South Korea fell to 0.72 in 2023, the lowest level ever recorded, down from 0.78 the previous year. South Korea is concerned with the effects of this reduction on social welfare, economic growth, and an aging population.

From its current 51 million, the nation’s population is predicted to drop 30% before 2072.  Variables such as a job-driven culture, wage discrepancies, educational settings, and high housing prices contribute to this tendency.

Increased parental allowances, decreased mortgage rates, and initiatives to relax laws on using foreign nannies are all part of the effort to reverse the falling birth rate.

Research shows a significant decline in the birth rate compared to 2015 when worries about housing and school costs were reduced, and to the 2.1 births per woman required for a stable population.

South Koreans believe that getting married is necessary for starting a family, although marriage rates are falling along with the population.  Women are delaying or opting not to have children because they are worried about the impact on their careers and the financial burden of maintaining a family, according to experts.

The country spent over $270 billion on areas such as subsidies for childcare since 2006 to try to halt the trend that resulted in a fourth consecutive year of population reduction in 2023.  South Korea’s declining population seriously threatens the country’s economic development and social welfare system.

Earlier predictions from South Korea indicated that the country’s fertility rate will drop even lower to 0.68 in 2024. The population is becoming older at a faster rate.

To calm concerns about a possible national extinction due to falling fertility rates, the main political parties in South Korea promised more public dwellings and simpler financing in the run-up to the April elections.

Japan has noted that its own birth rate hit a new record low in 2023, the ninth consecutive year of decline. Japan’s fertility rate hit a record low of 1.26 in 2022, while China recorded 1.09, also a record low.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has emphasized the critical role of child-rearing support in addressing the social and economic challenges of a shrinking and aging population and implementing measures to support families.