Wednesday, October 22, 2014
I have heard from several families asking why there have not been additional EP applications since July 30th.
The reason is that the Ministry of Health and Welfare (MOHW), predicting that a certain number of EPs will be granted this year, has allowed the agencies to submit sooner, around 90 applications in late June and another 90 in July 30th. The two submissions number around 180 EP applications submitted to MOHW. So, with the EP submissions that were made earlier than June, the total number of EPs submitted this year would certainly reach around 250~300.
The MOHW did not base this number (190 EP submissions) based on the number of domestic placements of children within Korea, but based on the knowledge that they will eventually adjust the final number of EPs for the year 2014 based on the 2/3 rule they have been using. In other words, the MOHW allowed more EPs sooner in favor of many waiting families, knowing that they will eventually adjust the number at the end of the year.
As you all know, the MOHW has been applying 2/3 rule for some time now. For those who are not familiar with the 2/3 rule, the MOHW will allow the number of EPs submitted for intercountry adoption based on 2/3 of the number of adoptions the agencies place domestically. For example, if an agency places 300 domestic adoptions, then they will be allowed to submit 200 EP applications for intercountry adoption.
As of September 30th, the three agencies have placed around 500 children domestically. Assuming another 150 domestic placements to occur during the remaining three months (Oct - Dec), then one can guess that around 650 domestic adoptions will take place for the year 2014. This is close to the 686 domestic placements that took place in 2013. So one can conclude that for the year 2014, there will be around 430 (2/3 of 650) intercountry adoptions compared to 236 in 2013.
This does not mean that the intercountry adoption is on the rise. It simply means that last year due to the adjustment issues centered on implementing the special adoption law, the number of intercountry adoption came in much lower than it should have been. 236 adoptions instead of what should have been 457 (2/3 of 686).
One can expect that there will be additional EP submissions by November, to grant the remaining EPs for the year. I am guessing that to be around 150 ~ 160 EPs.
I hope this helps to clear away the questions that many were asking.