Parents of children 5 and under get monthly allowance in South Korea
SEOUL — Most parents of children aged up to 5 will be given a monthly allowance of 100,000 won ($88) per child starting from Friday, with the exceptions of some high-earners and overseas residents, the country’s Welfare Ministry said.
Of 2.3 million applications submitted from June 20 to Sept. 14, 1.9 million have been accepted for the allowance scheme aimed at boosting the country’s critically low birthrate.
This means 94.3 percent of all South Korean children aged up to 5 will benefit from the program, the ministry added.
Parents whose applications were rejected or pending belong to the wealthiest 10 percent of the population, have a net worth that has yet to be verified by the respective provincial government or have children born overseas who have not spent more than 90 days in Korea.
Some 60,000 were found to be ineligible because the parents were high-earners.
The average monthly income of parents eligible for the allowance scheme was 4 million won.
North Jeolla Province had the highest proportion of children, 96.7 percent, who qualified for the allowance, while Seoul had the lowest figure at 88.6 percent. Seoul also had the highest number of parents whose applications were rejected, at 5.1 percent, while North Jeolla Province similarly had the lowest — at 0.9 percent.
The Welfare Ministry decided not to offer the allowance to 233 Korean children who have additional foreign citizenships and who have not lived in South Korea for more than 90 days. The same criteria was applied to young Korean children born overseas who have not spent more than 90 days in the country.
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