Number of immigrants in S. Korea down 2 pct in 2022

SEOUL– The number of immigrants, including naturalized citizens, in South Korea fell around 2 percent on-year in 2022 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the government data showed Tuesday.

The number of immigrants here reached 1.35 million as of May 2022, down from 1.38 million tallied a year earlier, according to the data compiled by Statistics Korea.

Foreign nationals accounted for 1.3 million, down 2.2 percent on-year, with naturalized citizens taking up 52,000, up 5.6 percent over the period, the data showed.

Among foreign nationals, those from China, including ethnic Koreans, accounted for 46.8 percent, trailed by Vietnam with 13 percent. Other Asian countries accounted for 30.1 percent.

The data showed 64.8 percent of foreign nationals residing in South Korea had jobs in 2022, up 0.6 percentage point from a year earlier. Naturalized citizens held a comparable figure of 65.3 percent, also up 1.7 percentage points on-year.

The number of wage workers among foreign nationals came to 793,000 in 2022, down 2.3 percent on-year. Around 30 percent of them earned a monthly income of 3 million won (US$2,300) or higher, and 18.8 percent made less than 2 million won.

Around 35 percent of foreign nationals resided in Gyeonggi Province, trailed by Seoul with 22 percent.

More than 80 percent of the immigrants considered their everyday life in South Korea “satisfactory,” according to the agency.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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