South Korean company offers staff over $100k for having babies; employee says she can now plan for second child

South Korean company offers staff over $100k for having babies; employee says she can now plan for second child
A South Korean family with their baby son at home on December 19, 2018.
PHOTO: Reuters

In a bid to boost the country's?low birth rate, one company in South Korea is putting their money where their mouth is.

Booyoung Group is?offering employees an attractive sum of 100 million won (S$101,000) for every baby born.

The initiative was announced by chairman Lee Joong-keun at the conglomerate's New Year kick-off meeting on Monday (Feb 5), reported the Korea JoongAng Daily.

"If Korea's birth rate remains low, the country will face the crisis of extinction in 20 years," said Lee.

A total of seven billion won in incentives were?awarded to 70 employees who welcomed one or more children since January 2021, according to the property and construction giant.

New mum Son Jeong-hyun, who?welcomed her bundle of joy on Jan?3,?shared that throughout her pregnancy, she had?worried about the financial difficulties in raising a child, The Chosun Daily reported.

"But thanks to Booyoung Group’s extraordinary support, I can now plan for a second child,” said the employee.

"In addition to the government's efforts, our company decided to ease the financial burden of raising children, which is considered the biggest cause of the low birth rate problem, and to support employees to balance work and family directly," Lee was quoted as saying.

The 85-year-old chairman also proposed providing?employees with three or more children with an incentive of either 300 million won or a permanent rental home sized below 85 sqm if the government permits, reported The Korea Times.

This is the first time a South Korean company is giving such a large childbirth incentive?to its staff.

Each baby born in 2024?will receive a total of 29.6 million won in cash support over a period?of eight years?from the government, reported The Korea Herald.

In 2023, the country's total fertility rate was at a record-low of 0.72 and is projected to fall to 0.65 in 2025.

ALSO READ:?South Korea smashes own record for world's lowest fertility rate

lim.kewei@asiaone.com

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