SINGAPORE: More Singaporeans are marrying foreigners. The number of Singaporeans marrying permanent residents and foreigners increased significantly in 2022 though the number of marriages to foreigners was still less than a decade ago. This is clear from the Population in Brief 2023 report released by the National Population and Talent Division on Friday (September 30).
More than three out of 10 Singaporeans who got married in 2022 tied the knot with a permanent resident or a non-resident.
There were 24,767 citizen marriages in 2022, the highest in a decade, and a 5.7 per cent increase from 23,433 such weddings in 2021. Citizen marriages are defined in the report as “marriages involving at least one citizen”. The number of citizen marriages increased for the second consecutive year in 2022 as couples who could not tie the knot during Covid-19 went forward and got married. As the chart (below) shows, there were 19,400 citizen marriages in 2020, the lowest in a decade, and 22,200 in 2019, also fewer than in the last two years. Before Covid, on the other hand, there were 23,200 citizen marriages in 2012, 21,800 in 2013, 24,000 in 2014, 23,800 in 2015, 23,900 in 2016, 24,400 in 2017 (the previous highest) and 23,600 in 2018.
However, the annual average number of citizen marriages in the last five years (22,700) remained lower than that of the preceding five years (23,600), says the report.
The median age at first marriage for Singaporean grooms and brides was 30.5 and 28.8 years in 2022, up from 30.1 and 27.7 years respectively in 2012.
A look at the marital status of male Singaporeans shows:
Singles made up 82.5 per cent of those aged 25 to 29 and 42.5 per cent of those aged 30 to 34 before falling sharply to 25.5 per cent in the 35 to 39 age group. However, 18.5 per cent were still single at ages between 40 and 44, and 14.9 per cent in the 45 to 49 age group.
A look at the marital status of female Singaporeans shows a similar pattern:
Singles made up 71.4 per cent of those aged 25 to 29 and 34.6 per cent of those aged 30 to 34 before falling sharply to 20.8 per cent in the 35 to 39 age group. But 19 per cent were still single at ages between 40 and 44, and 17.2 per cent in the 45 to 49 age group.
Thirty-three per cent of the citizen marriages in 2022 involved transnational couples, an increase from 29 per cent in 2021. Still, the proportion of transnational marriages remained lower than it was before Covid.
Transnational couples accounted for 40 per cent of the citizen marriages in 2012, 39 per cent in 2013, 37 per cent in 2014, 36 per cent in 2015 and 2016, 35 per cent in 2017, 36 per cent in 2018 and 37 per cent in 2019 before dropping to 30 per cent in 2020.
Of the 24,767 citizen marriages in 2022:
16,537 were between Singaporeans. Both bride and groom were Singaporeans. It was a slight drop from the 16,646 such marriages in 2021.
Singaporeans married permanent residents or non-residents in the other 8,000-plus citizen marriages in 2022.
Male Singaporeans married 1,687 PRs and 4,120 non-residents in 2022, up from 1,512 PRs and 3,151 non-residents in 2021.
Female Singaporeans married 683 PRs and 1,740 non-residents in 2022, up from 611 PRs and 1,513 non-residents in 2021.
Of the 5,807 non-citizen brides in 2022, 5,609 came from other Asian countries.
Of the 2,423 non-citizen grooms in 2022, 1,731 were from other Asian countries.
About one in six citizen marriages last year were inter-ethnic. This proportion has remained largely stable in the last 10 years, says the report.
In all, there were 29,389 marriages in 2022, up from 28,328 in 2021. The total figure includes marriages between PRs and non-residents.
In other news, Singapore’s non-resident population increased by 13.1 per cent as companies hired more foreigners to fill positions vacated by non-residents during the Covid-19 pandemic./TISG