Seoul’s working population to fall by one million

HRM 29 Nov 2012

South Korea’s capital is likely to lose one million people of working age over the next two decades as the country continues its spiral as one of the world’s most rapidly ageing societies.

According to the latest statistics by the Seoul Metropolitan Government, the city’s working population will drop from the current 7.64 million to 6.56 million by 2032.

In addition, the number of residents over the age of 65 will more than double from 1.03 million to 2.6 million during the next 20 years.

Experts warn that Seoul’s fast ageing population is bad news that is likely to result in a huge pensions bill and too few workers to sustain economic growth.

South Korea’s Finance Minister Bahk Jae-wan spoke recently on the possible depletion of the national pension fund.

“Population aging in Korea is progressing faster than any other country. The fastest aging boosted fears over the faster- than-expected depletion of the national pension fund,” Minister Bahk was quoted as saying at a seminar held in central Seoul.

To boost birth rates in South Korea, the government has implemented several schemes, including the provision of protected maternity leave. However, many fear that these measures may not be enough to turn the tide.



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