In Korea, the Multicultural Families Support Act (Revision, April 4th, 2011) defines multi-cultural families as follows:
Article 2 (Definitions)
The definitions of terms used in this Act shall be as follows:
1. The term “multi-cultural family” means a family falling under any of the following items: (a) A family comprised of a married immigrant under subparagraph 3 of Article 2 of the Framework Act on Treatment of Foreigners Residing in the Republic of Korea and a person who acquired the nationality of the Republic of Korea by birth pursuant to Article 2 of the Nationality Act;
(b) A family comprised of a person who obtained permission for naturalization under Article 4 of the Nationality Act and a person who acquired the nationality of the Republic of Korea by birth pursuant to Article 2 of the aforesaid Act;
2. The term ‘married immigrant or naturalized citizen, etc.’ means any of the following persons: (a) A married immigrant defined in subparagraph 3 of Article 2 of the Framework Act on Treatment of Foreigners Residing in the Republic of Korea;
(b) A person who obtained permission for naturalization under Article 4 of the Nationality Act.
The number of marriage migrants, naturalized Korean citizens and others who form the multicultural families are estimated to about 280,000 in 2013 in comparison with about 140,000 in 2006. The dominant multi-cultural families include Chinese, Vietnamese, Filipinos, and Japanese citizens. Also, there are multi-cultural families from Russia, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, England, France, the US, and Canada. An interesting characteristic is that the sex rate is different among nationalities. More foreign female spouses from Japan and Southeast Asia are found, while more male spouses from South Asia, Europe and North America are found. Regarding the spatial pattern of multi-cultural families, most of them are distributed in the metropolitan areas, including Seoul, Incheon, Gyeonggi-do, Busan, Gyeongsangnamdo, Gyeongsangbuk-do, Chungcheongnam-do, and Jeollanam-do. The male Chinese or Korean- Chinese men are clustered in urban areas such as Seoul Metropolitan areas, while many foreign female spouses from Vietnam and the Philippines are residing in the non-metropolitan areas. The 2006 and 2013 data on marriage immigrants and naturalized citizens via marriage or other reasons show that the ratio of foreigners in multi-cultural families out of total foreigners decreased recently while the absolute number of foreigners in multi-cultural families increased. This is due to the diversification of immigration purposes. Until the mid-2000s, marriage and labor dominated the rationale behind immigration to Korea, but recent immigrations include various fields such as the knowledge industry, professional expertise, and immigration itself, resulting in a relatively lower ratio of foreigners in multi-cultural families. The multi-cultural family support centers help multicultural families to settle and integrate successfully into Korean society. There are 214 such centers in Korea. The major tasks of the centers are to provide visiting language education services for marriage migrants or their families who have difficulties in taking regular education because of economic conditions or the long distance between their new home and such services, and translation services for the people with difficulties in communicating in Korean. Also, these multi-cultural family support centers provide Korean language learning services and classes especially for multi-cultural children in order to promote their social development.