[Photo by Yonhap]
South Korea’s female employment rate hit the highest level in October as more women returned to the workforce after the end of the pandemic and the government’s work-life balance policy started to pay off.
The employment rate for women aged between 15 and 64, the working age population, stood at 61.9 percent in October, according to a report submitted by the Korea Labor Institute to the Ministry of Employment and Labor on Tuesday.
The rate has been drawing an upward curve, climbing to 60.4 percent last year from 58.6 percent in 2021.
The employment rate for women in their 30s with children, in particular, increased 2 percentage points from a year ago in the second half of last year, rebounding after falling in 2020 and 2021.
The rise comes as women who stayed at home to take care of their children rejoined the workforce after the pandemic ended.
The rate of career breaks among unemployed women in their 30s with children also declined 7.5 percentage points in six years to 69.8 percent in the first half of last year from 77.3 percent in the first half of 2016.
“We will continue to build a labor market environment that is compatible with work and family by expanding maternity protection programs and promoting flexible work,” said Lee Sung-hee, vice minister of employment.
By Lee Yun-sik and Choi Jieun
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]