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Single-person households in Seoul rise to over 24 pct

All Headlines 10:08 April 10, 2016

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- Slightly more than 24 percent of homes in Seoul are made up of just one person, with the rate expected to hit 30 percent in 2035, a metropolitan government survey showed Sunday.

The latest figures regarding household sizes in Seoul during 2010 were released in the March edition of the "Seoul Economics," a monthly news letter published by the Seoul Metropolitan Government.

The figure was only 4.5 percent in 1980.

Byeon Mi-ri, chief of the Global Future Research Center of the Seoul Institute who conducted the survey, said the rise is mainly attributable to the increase in women's economic activities and change of their views on marriage, which led to the growth of women choosing to remain single or marry at a later age.

Other reasons include the rise of divorces and elderly citizens left alone after the death of a spouse and young people who don't have a job stable enough to start a family.

Except for the group who voluntarily chose to live alone to enjoy their single life with a monthly income that is well over 3.5 million won (US$3,034), most single-households are faced with the problems of "poverty" and "social isolation," Byeon said.

"The increase of one-person households is a phenomenon being experienced by advanced countries, too," she said. "The government should provide housing support, 'social care' services and welfare benefits for elderly citizens," she stressed.
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