SEOUL, Dec. 30 (Korea Bizwire) — The number of marriages in South Korea is on a decline as public perceptions towards the social pact is changing.
Statistics Korea reported that there were 20,331 marriages in October, down by 7 percent from the previous year (1,525 fewer marriages). This marked the second lowest record since 1981.
The number of marriages is expected to reach an all-time low this year as well. As of October, there had only been 193,772 marriages in South Korea, down by 7.3 percent since last year (208,003).
Compared with 20 years ago (280,847 marriages), the marriages have dropped by 44.9 percent.
With the declining number of marriages, people are getting married at an older age. Last year, the average age of South Korean men getting married was 33.15 years, compared to 30.4 years for women.
Perceptions of marriage are also changing. Last year, only 48.1 percent of South Koreans said they should get married, dropping below 50 percent for the first time since 2008.
South Korean men felt a stronger need for marriage (52.8 percent) than women (43.5 percent). Roughly half of women, on the other hand, said they ‘feel indifferent towards marriage’.
“Financial difficulties, family support, and other relationship problems are becoming heavier burdens to sustain a marriage,” said professor Lim Myung-ho from Dankook University.
“Perceptions towards marriage are changing such that people want to spend less emotions and energy, and carry out a more comfortable life.”
Lina Jang (firstname.lastname@example.org)