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A new law in South Korea has aligned the nation’s two traditional age-counting methods with international standards.

The one traditional system counts the time in the womb which deemed children one at the age of birth. The other system meant that everyone aged by a year on the first day of January, irrespective of when their birthday is. Essentially it meant that people in South Korea aged by two years every year.

President Yoon Suk Yeol said it was time for the traditional age-counting system to fall away as it created “unnecessary social and economic costs”.

One of the problems it created was eligibility for government assistance programmes and the pay-outs that are determined by a person’s age.

Other East Asian countries also used to make use of the traditional age-counting methods but South Korea is the last country to drop it.

A doctor told BBC the country’s medical sector has already been adopting the international age system.

“Now that Korea is following the global standard, I no longer have to explain my ‘Korean age’ when I go abroad.”

Image credit: NBC News

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