01/14/2019, 12.56
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South Koreans getting older: population grows only 0.9 per cent

The resident population was 51,826,059. 50-year-olds are the largest age group. The average household size of dropped to 2.35 members.

Seoul (AsiaNews/Agencies) – South Korea's population growth rate fell below 0.1 per cent for the first time this year, with the median age topping 42, data from the Ministry of the Interior and Safety show.

The nation's resident population was 51,826,059 as of the end of 2018, marking an increase of 0.09 per cent, or 47,515 people, from the previous year. The population growth rate had risen from 0.47 per cent in 2009 to 1.49 per cent in 2010 before steadily sliding to 0.16 per cent in 2017.

The nation's median age exceeded 42 for the first time, reaching 42.1 last year, the ministry said, indicating the gradual aging of the population.

Compared with the previous year, the population in their 40s and younger declined, whilst the population in their 50s and older increased. Notably, the population aged zero to 9 was only 49.94 per cent of those in their 50s, marking the first time the figure has fallen below 50 per cent.

The population younger than 50 dropped by 605,073, whilst the population older than 50 increased by 652,588.

Among those under the age of 50, only the population in their 20s showed an increase, as it grew by 13,006 people.

The number of people older than 100 increased by 933 from 17,850 in 2017 to 18,783 last year.

By age group, the population in their 50s accounted for the largest number at 8,615,884, followed by 8,488,587 in their 40s; 7,270,143 in their 30s; 6,823,973 in their 20s; 5,949,639 in their 60s; 5,131,153 aged 10 to 19; 4,303,052 aged 0 to 9; 3,497,936 in their 70s and 1,516,992 in their 80s.

The population aged 0 to 14 accounted for 12.8 per cent of the total, whereas the population older than 65 accounted for 14.8 per cent.

The number of resident households was 22,042,947, up 1.9 per cent from 2017, with the average household size dropping from 2.39 to 2.35.

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