More women in South Korea choosing to leave the workforce

Childcare has been cited as the main reason why married women in the country choose to leave the workforce.
By: | November 23, 2022

Around 17% of South Korean women take a career break following marriage, according to data from Statistics Korea. 

Some 1.39 million women aged 15-54 stopped working after marriage as of April 2022, down from 1.44 million last year. The fall in figures is in line with a decline in marriages in South Korea, which fell to 8.1 million in April this year, down 2.6% from 8.32 million in 2021. 

Among married women who quit their jobs, some 42.8%, or 597,000, cited childcare as the main reason why they left the workforce. This is followed by 26.3% who said they stopped working due to getting married, followed by 22.7% who quit due to pregnancy and childbirths.

READ: South Korea prioritises job creation for older jobseekers

Female workers aged 30-39 accounted for 43% of married women who quit their jobs, followed by workers aged 40-49, at 42.1%. As of April, there were 2.62 million working mothers with children younger than 18 years old, data showed.