The ratio of younger people in South Korea's total working population has dropped sharply over the past three decades, data showed Monday, raising concerns the decline could undermine the country's overall growth potential.
According to the data by Statistics Korea, the number of people aged 15-29 stood at 3.82 million in May, accounting for 15.1 percent of the total 25.39 million working population.
The ratio is about half the corresponding figure recorded in May 1983 when related data started to be compiled. The ratio at the time stood at 31.5 percent.
The decline is attributable partly to the fast-aging population, which has lowered the ratio of younger people.
Experts said that the fact that a growing number of younger people remain out of work after failing to find high-quality jobs is also playing a part.
The ratio of younger people in the total population stood at 30.4 percent in 1980 and plunged to 20.9 percent in 2010, government data showed.
During the same period, the ratio of working people in the cited age group shrank at a faster pace from 31.5 percent to 16.6 percent.
Experts worry that the continued decline could end up disrupting the country's growth potential significantly going forward by sapping vitality out of the economy. (Yonhap News)