Despite having one of the world’s lowest birthrates and the 14th-largest economy, South Korea is a major source of infants adopted internationally each year. As the country has grown richer, its total fertility rate has fallen to the lowest level in the industrialized world, from more than six babies per mother in 1960 to 1.15 today, far below the accepted replacement level of 2.1 per mother, according to figures supplied by the World Bank. Despite that, there seems little impetus to keep its adoptable children at home. Many factors are at work that lead to South Korean babies being adopted, both domestically and abroad.
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