South Korea fertility rate at 0.78, lowest in world

SEOUL, South Korea: Data released by Statistics Korea this week reported that the fertility rate in South Korea, which already has the world’s lowest number of expected children per woman, declined to a record low last year.

The data also showed that in 2022, the average number of expected babies per South Korean woman over her reproductive life fell to 0.78, down from 0.81 in 2021.

This figure is far below 1.64 in the US and 1.33 in Japan over the same period, and is the lowest among countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which had an average rate of 1.59 in 2020.

Despite allocating billions of dollars annually on childcare subsidies, the South Korean government has failed to reverse the country’s falling birth rate.

South Korea was the only country among the OECD members to have a rate below 1 as of 2020, which means its population is shrinking.

The capital, Seoul, has the lowest birth rate at 0.59.