68.1% of older South Koreans want to work till 73
This works out to about 10 million people out of the 14.76 million in this age bracket, an increase of 0.7 percentage point year-on-year in May, according to a Statistics Korea survey.
As for why they wish to continue working, 58.7% said they want to continue earning their living expenses, while 33.2% said they want to feel the joy of work as long as their health permits.
Those aged between 55 and 79 made up 32.8% of the 45 million people aged 15 and older as of end-May.
The country has been experiencing low birthrates and, with a rise in life expectancy, challenges related to an ageing population.
By 2025, South Korea is expected to become a super-aged society where the proportion of those aged 65 and older will be 20% of the total population. The country became an aged society in 2017 when the proportion of such people exceeded 14%.
The issue on whether to increase the retirement age, currently set at 60, has become a hotly debated topic due to the growing need to address a major drop in the workforce in the coming years. But the government remains cautious about the extension of the retirement age, possibly to 65, citing the need to build a social consensus, according to Yonhap.