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About Republic of Korea

Republic of Korea is one of recent times' greatest success stories. Get to know why and much more here.


Capital: Seoul

Area: 100,431 km2

Population: 51.7 million (2021)

Annual increase in population: -0.18% (2021) 

Language: Korean

Time difference: +7/+8 (summertime/wintertime)


Head of State: President H.E. Yoon Suk-yeol

Head of Government: Prime Minister H.E. Han Duck-soo

Minister of Foreign Affairs: H.E. Park Jin

Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy: H.E. Lee Chang-yang


Domestic Political Situation

In March 2022, the South Korean people elected Yoon Suk-yeol as their new and 20th president. The conservative candidate from People Power Party and former Prosecutor General Yoon Suk-yeol took office on 10 May, replacing the liberal president Moon Jae-in from the Democratic Party of Korea.

Domestically, Yoon is focused on reducing economic interventionism by the government and rebuilding the economy after covid-19. The South Korean economy should be led by the private sector, and backed by the government, according to Yoon and his administration. The president wishes to support Korean businesses and wants to make it more attractive to business in South Korea.

Yoon's foreign policy platform is highly focused on strengthening the alliance with the United States and to restore the historically tense relationship with Japan. When it comes to North Korea, Yoon's primary goal is the total denuclearization of the country to ensure peace on the Korean peninsula. During President Yoon's first Liberation Day speech on 15 August, he offered North Korea economic and humanitarian support in return for denuclearization.

Read more about the Yoon administration here.

Foreign Policy

The predominant foreign policy priority for South Korea is the relationship to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), maintaining peace on the peninsula and containing the DPRK’s nuclear and ballistic programmes.

Economic Situation

Founded on Confucian virtues of education, discipline and hard work, and through close ties between state and industry, South Korea has managed to maintain consistently high economic growth rates. In only a few decades South Korea has undergone a transformation from being one of the poorest countries in the world to being the fourth largest economy in Asia and the 12th largest in the world according to the International Monetary Fund (2018).

The rapid development has mainly been based on the Korean family owned business conglomerates – so called “chaebols” – which to this day still make up the core of South Korea’s export economy in their respective sectors (Hyundai, Samsung, LG, Kia, Daewoo etc.). For more information about the economy and economic development of South Korea, please visit the IMF, OECD or World Bank by following the links below:


Korea in Figures

By clicking “Link to source” you will see figures covering previous years.





Surface area

100,431 km(2021) 

sq. kim

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Population total

51,738,071 (2021)

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Population growth

-0,18% (2021)

annual %

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Life expectancy at birth

83,5 (2021)


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GDP growth

4,1 (2021)

annual %

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Mortality rate, under 5


per 1000 live births

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School enrolment, primary


% gross

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