23rd March 2023 – (Seoul) Only half of South Koreans saw marriage as a must, reflecting the changed perception of marriage, statistical office data showed on Thursday.
According to Statistics Korea’s report on the country’s social indicators in 2022, 50 percent of South Korean people aged 13 and higher said they should get married.
The percentage of those regarding marriage as essential has been on the decline from 64.7 percent in 2010 to 56.8 percent in 2014, 48.1 percent in 2018 and 51.2 percent in 2020.
In 2022, 55.8 percent of men considered marriage as a must, while the percentage for women was only 44.3 percent.
The percentage of those who said they need children after marriage stood at 65.3 percent in 2022, down from 68.0 percent in 2020 and 69.6 percent in 2018.
Among those aged 13-19, only 41.1 percent voiced support last year for having children after marriage.
While 44.0 percent of those in their 20s saw childbirth after marriage as a must, the proportion rose to 54.7 percent for those in their 30s.
The country’s younger generation chose to opt out of marriage and childbirth due to economic difficulties such as high housing prices, high education costs and stubborn youth unemployment.
The country’s total fertility rate, or the average number of children a woman is expected to bear during her lifetime, hit a record low of 0.78 in 2022.