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Australia’s childcare costs not worst of the worst

Kate Ellis and many others may begrudge Australian childcare costs, but Society at a Glance 2016 has put them into context.

The biennial OECD report, released this month, shows many of our international neighbours easily eclipse us, in childcare fees as a percentage of household income.

On average, childcare in Australia consumes 15.7 per cent of household incomes. By contrast, this amount is 29 per cent in New Zealand and a whopping 33.8 per cent in the UK.

We’ve still got room to improve, however. Our costs are still above the international average of 15 per cent of household income, and we ranked a lowly 20 out of 30 countries.

Infographic: UK Families Spend A Third Of Their Income On Childcare | Statista

The report further revealed that, globally, lone parents do it especially tough. In the US, for example, they spend roughly 50 per cent of their income on childcare.

On the bright, and cheaper, side, Scandinavia, for once, isn’t the early-education exemplar, with Korea at the top of the childcare affordability ladder.

The authors nonetheless emphasised outstanding policies in the Nordic countries. Denmark offers all parents subsidised childcare for kids over 6 months of age, while Reykjavik, the Icelandic capital, offers reduced fees for single parents.

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