Every South Korean has just become younger overnight

Every South Korean has just become younger overnight
4-year-old students in South Korea surprise their teacher with cake and a …

South Koreans have suddenly become a year or two younger thanks to a new law.

Under the law, the country has aligned their traditional age-counting methods with international standards, meaning they have scrapped the system that deemed South Koreans one year old at birth, counting time in the womb.

Another system scrapped counted everyone as ageing by a year every first day of January instead of on their birthdays.

President Yoon Suk Yeol pushed for the change when he ran for office last year, saying the traditional age-counting methods created "unnecessary social and economic costs" thanks to insurance disputes and determining eligibility for government assistance programmes.

Lawmakers voted to scrap the traditional counting methods last December and it is pretty popular with around 75 per cent in favour of it according to local polls.

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However, many existing statutes that count a person's age based on the "counting age" calendar year system will remain. For example, South Koreans can buy cigarettes and alcohol from the year - not the day - they turn 19.

Meanwhile, the traditional age-counting methods were also used by other East Asian countries, but most have dropped it.

Japan adopted the international standard in 1950 while North Korea followed suit in the 1980s.

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