Quality of Life Comparison

COMPARED TO

If you lived in South Korea instead of United Kingdom, you would:

Health

live 1.5 years longer


In United Kingdom, the average life expectancy is 81 years (79 years for men, 84 years for women) as of 2020. In South Korea, that number is 83 years (79 years for men, 86 years for women) as of 2020.

be 83.1% less likely to be obese


In United Kingdom, 27.8% of adults are obese as of 2016. In South Korea, that number is 4.7% of people as of 2016.

Economy

be 15.9% less likely to be unemployed


In United Kingdom, 4.4% of adults are unemployed as of 2017. In South Korea, that number is 3.7% as of 2017.

pay a 15.6% lower top tax rate


United Kingdom has a top tax rate of 45.0% as of 2016. In South Korea, the top tax rate is 38.0% as of 2016.

make 10.8% less money


United Kingdom has a GDP per capita of $44,300 as of 2017, while in South Korea, the GDP per capita is $39,500 as of 2017.

Life

be 26.8% less likely to die during infancy


In United Kingdom, approximately 4.1 children die before they reach the age of one as of 2020. In South Korea, on the other hand, 3.0 children do as of 2020.

be 57.1% more likely to die during childbirth


In United Kingdom, approximately 7.0 women per 100,000 births die during labor as of 2017. In South Korea, 11.0 women do as of 2017.

have 31.1% fewer children


In United Kingdom, there are approximately 11.9 babies per 1,000 people as of 2020. In South Korea, there are 8.2 babies per 1,000 people as of 2020.

Geography

see 80.6% less coastline


United Kingdom has a total of 12,429 km of coastline. In South Korea, that number is 2,413 km.

South Korea: At a glance

South Korea (sometimes abbreviated ROK) is a sovereign country in East/Southeast Asia, with a total land area of approximately 96,920 sq km. An independent kingdom for much of its long history, Korea was occupied by Japan beginning in 1905 following the Russo-Japanese War. In 1910, Tokyo formally annexed the entire Peninsula. Korea regained its independence following Japan's surrender to the United States in 1945. After World War II, a democratic-based government (Republic of Korea, ROK) was set up in the southern half of the Korean Peninsula while a communist-style government was installed in the north (Democratic People's Republic of Korea, DPRK). During the Korean War (1950-53), US troops and UN forces fought alongside ROK soldiers to defend South Korea from a DPRK invasion supported by China and the Soviet Union. A 1953 armistice split the peninsula along a demilitarized zone at about the 38th parallel. PARK Chung-hee took over leadership of the country in a 1961 coup. During his regime, from 1961 to 1979, South Korea achieved rapid economic growth, with per capita income rising to roughly 17 times the level of North Korea. South Korea held its first free presidential election under a revised democratic constitution in 1987, with former ROK Army general ROH Tae-woo winning a close race. In 1993, KIM Young-sam (1993-98) became the first civilian president of South Korea's new democratic era. President KIM Dae-jung (1998-2003) won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2000 for his contributions to South Korean democracy and his "Sunshine" policy of engagement with North Korea. President PARK Geun-hye, daughter of former ROK President PARK Chung-hee, took office in February 2013 and is South Korea's first female leader. South Korea holds a non-permanent seat (2013-14) on the UN Security Council and will host the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. Serious tensions with North Korea have punctuated inter-Korean relations in recent years, including the North's attacks on a South Korean ship and island in 2010, nuclear and missile tests, and its temporary closure of the inter-Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex in 2013.

How big is South Korea compared to United Kingdom? See an in-depth size comparison.


The statistics on this page were calculated using the following data sources: The World Factbook, National Tax Service, South Korea, HM Revenue & Customs.

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