Korea will likely become an aged society this year, which is a lot earlier than demographers expected. Over-65s already make up almost 14 percent of the population, according to the Ministry of the Interior on Tuesday.
A country is defined as "aging" if the percentage of the elderly population exceeds seven percent, which happened here in 2000, as "aged" if the proportion exceeds 14 percent, and as a "super-aged" when it is over 20 percent. As of January, there were 7.03 million elderly people over 65 in Korea or 13.6 percent of the population.
The number of elderly people born between 1949 and 1951 who turned 65 in recent years stood at between 430,000 and 450,000, contributing to an increase of about 200,000 every year in the elderly population if those who die are subtracted.
But the number of people born in 1952 who turn 65 this year stands at a whopping 570,000, increasing the elderly population by some 300,000, which will lead to a proportion over 14 percent.