The people of Seoul are getting older.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government said Tuesday that the capital's overall population, including locals and foreigners, stood at ten.four million last year.
Among them,… people over 65 years old amounted to around one.four million or 14.four percent of Seoul's population.
This means Seoul has, for the first time, become an "aged society" according to standards set by the United Nations.
According to the UN, if the proportion of senior citizens in an area exceeds seven percent, it's an "aging society", more than 14 percent is an "aged society" and over 20 percent is a "super-aged society."
Seoul was already an "aging society" in 2005,… and the South Korean capital is expected to be classified as a "super-aged society" in 2026 based on current projections.
However, this aging trend is not a problem exclusive to Seoul.
Recent data released by Statistics Korea shows people over 65 make up about 15 percent of South Korea's total population this year.
This means the whole country is an "aged society",… and is projected to become "super-aged" in 2025.
This is because people in South Korea are having fewer babies and are living longer.
South Korea's fertility rate for the past five years was at 1.11 the lowest in the world.
On top of that, people in South Korea are expected to live ten years longer than the global average.
Several other countries are experiencing similar trends.
According to Japan's Kyodo News Agency, Japan has the highest proportion of senior citizens of any country in the world, with around a third of Japanese people aged over 65.
Even the urban center of Japan, Tokyo became a "super-aged society" some nine years ago, with around a fifth of the city's population made up of seniors according to Japan's National Census.
Countries like Italy, Portugal, Finland and Greece, with around 22% of citizens aged over 65, are also already "super-aged societies".
New York City is also seeing a big shift. Today, nearly one in six New Yorkers is 65 or above.
When it comes to the entire U.S. population, people over 65 made up 15 percent of the overall population in 2014, making the U.S. an “aged society.”
It is expected to become “super-aged” by 2050, according to the World Population Review.
As fewer people start families in certain parts of the world, urban centers once known to be cities of youthfulness are turning grayer by the day.
Kim Bo-kyoung, Arirang News.