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Report: Korean Workforce to Be World's Oldest by 2045 Updated: 2012-06-19 12:00:00 KST

Report: Korean Workforce to Be World's Oldest by 2045
Korea now holds the distinction of having the fastest aging population on Earth.
According to a new emerging markets report by the Royal Bank of Scotland on Monday Korea is expected to have the world's oldest workforce by 2045.
The average age of a Korean worker is predicted to hit 50 that year up from around 35 now.
The number of people in Korea's workforce will start to drop in 2016 and the pace at which it does will surpass Europe and Japan in 2020.
The report added that each person in the workforce would be responsible for supporting more than one-and-a-half elderly people by the year 2050, if the trend continues.
Currently, there are around six workers supporting one senior citizen.
This is forecast to negatively affect Korea's potential growth rate dropping from 4.2 percent in 2011 to 3.1 percent in 2023.

[Interview : Youngsun Koh, Chief Economist
Korea Development Institute] "The savings ratio will drop because elderly people tend to spend money rather than save. This will lead to a drop in investment and capital accumulation. There would definitely be a negative impact."

Koh also pointed out the ballooning deficit in the country's retirement pension funds due to an aging population is a major concern.
He said that reforming the national pension system should be a top priority.

[Reporter : Hwang Ji-hye, emilyfwang@arirang.co.kr] "The expert added that it's critical for the government to lay out policies that involve more senior citizens and women in the workforce to prevent Korea's aging population from hindering the country's growth.
Hwang Ji-hye, Arirang News."
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