Deep Dive 13 minutes Premium

Deep Dive: The Challenges of an Aging Population—South Korea

Executive Summary

In this report, we examine the rapidly changing demographic makeup of South Korea, the implications an aging population has on its economy and the various policies the government has put in place to address this issue.

  • In 2016, the number of seniors (those aged 65 and over) in South Korea had reached 6.8 million, or 13% of the total population, according to UN data.
  • Some 46% of seniors in the country were living in poverty in 2015, according to the OECD.
  • The life expectancy rate in South Korea jumped to 82 years in 2015 from 62 years in 1970, while the fertility rate (i.e., the number of children born per woman) declined to 1.2 children from 4.5 children.
  • Doubling nearly every 15 years, South Korea’s senior population is seeing the fast growth among the major global economies and emerging markets.

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