October 25, 2018 11:58
Only 27,300 babies were born in August, the first time the monthly figure has fallen below 30,000 since statistics began in 1981.
Births have been falling for 29 consecutive months, but deaths rose amid the scorching heatwave to 23,900, the fifth monthly record in a row.
Statistics Korea on Wednesday said births in August fell 9.3 percent or 2,800 from a year ago. Births fluctuate according to the season, so on-year comparisons are more telling.
The cumulative number of babies born from January to August this year was also a record low at 226,000, down 8.7 percent from a year ago. Only Gwangju, Sejong City and Jeju maintained their birthrate from last year, but everywhere else it fell.
The cumulative number of deaths over the eight months was 200,000, up seven percent from last year.
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