SBS Economic Freedom Salon discovers insights to overcome the times through analysis and interpretation delivered by top economic experts.

In today's live, we will talk about the 'low birth rate policy' with Lee Sang-rim, director of the Population Monitoring and Evaluation Center at the Korea Institute of Health and Social Affairs. (Moderator: Ae-ri Kwon)

Q. What do you think is the biggest problem that the birth rate continues to fall even though the government continues to make policies related to the birth rate?

A. Last year, the total fertility rate was 0.78, the lowest ever among OECD countries. Ukraine and Russia at war also have more than 1.3, there have been no such cases in demography.

Q. Young people's perception of marriage and childbirth has also changed a lot. What do you think is driving young people to distance themselves from marriage and childbirth?

A. The main reason is that the "jobs" and "housing issues" have not been resolved. Another problem is that family closeness is getting weaker. I think young people have a lower fundamental need for family.

Q. Now that college students are entering the age of marriage and childbearing in 1990, what do you most want and need from this age group?

A. We need to create an environment where the younger generation can predict the future, and the gap between regular and non-regular workers, the gap between men and women, etc., must be broken down in order to alleviate the low birth rate policy.

Q. In a recent survey, Korea was ranked as the country with the highest child care costs in the world, followed by China. Why is child support still high and always feeling like a burden?

A. In Korea, after the low birth rate policy, good jobs are getting better and bad jobs are getting worse. The widening job gap is the biggest problem. Along with cash support, childcare and child care policies should also be well supplemented. Korea is the country with the longest period of parental leave, but in reality, it is in a situation where it cannot be used well.

Q. What will change in the next five years?

A. The ripple effect of aging will not be noticeable, but the labor shortage of the younger generation will increase in the near future. It will be especially difficult for businesses in rural areas.

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