SEOUL, Jan. 5 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea is forecast to overtake Japan in terms of the proportion of elderly people among the total population in about 20 years due to its steep population aging speed, the central bank predicted Monday.
The Bank of Korea (BOK) said in its latest report that South Korea ranks 29th among 37 member states of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in terms of the ratio of elderly people in total population today.
The country, however, is expected to overtake the top country Japan earlier than expected. Previously, South Korea was expected to overtake Japan sometime in around 2045.
In its future population research conducted in 2019, Statistics Korea presented two scenarios (median and pessimistic) with respect to the change in the proportion of elderly people among the total population.
In the pessimistic scenario, the proportion of elderly people was estimated to shoot up to 36.4 percent in 2043, exceeding Japan’s 36.35 percent. South Korea’s proportion of elderly people stood at 15.7 percent in 2020.
The BOK report stressed that in recent days, the nation’s birth rate has been falling at a steeper pace than expected, adding that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on marriages and births would be stronger in South Korea than Japan since the proportion of young people is higher in South Korea than Japan.
The overall size of South Korea’s total population is also expected to start declining earlier than expected. Statistics Korea expected the total population to start falling from 2029.
Lina Jang (email@example.com)