First Comes Policy, Then Comes Marriage, Then Comes...

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With marriage and birth rates on the decline in many developed countries, governments around the world are thinking up some interesting new ways to encourage they're citizens to get hitched and get pregnant.

From government-sponsored speed dating, to tax breaks for married couples, here are some creative ways in which Big Brother is playing matchmaker.

The Perks of Saying "I Do"

With marriage and birth rates on the decline in many developed countries, governments around the world are thinking up some interesting new ways to encourage they're citizens to get hitched and get pregnant.

From government-sponsored speed dating, to tax breaks for married couples, here are some creative ways in which Big Brother is playing matchmaker.

The United States

That's right, even the U.S. has a history of instituting pro-marriage policies. The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), the welfare reform signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996, explicitly sought to “encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.” States like Oklahoma earmarked funds to reduce divorce rates, while Florida actually introduced "marriage preparation skills" in their school curriculums.

France

Like many European countries, France implemented a variety of pro-natalist policies following the realization that they just weren't making babies like they used to. The government encourages women to have children while also staying in the workforce by providing cash incentives and tax breaks for each additional child she gives birth to, extensive parental leave, and government-subsidized childcare. And it's working! France now has one of the highest birthrates in Western Europe.

The Phillipines

The Phillipines is the last country in the world (with the exception of Vatican City) where divorce is still illegal. A bill was passed just this June to ensure that any future attempts to legalize divorce would be barred. It's catchy title? “An Act providing for the Protection of Marriage as an Inviolable Social Institution and the Family as the Foundation of the Nation.” The country's more liberal politicians have attempted to push reform in conjunction with anti-violence against women legislation to no avail.

Singapore

Mentos teamed up with Singapore's government to produce the National Night campaign, complete with a catchy song and video (seriously, it's amazing) to encourage “financially secure adults in stable, committed long-term relationships" to "let [their] patriotism explode" on August 9th every year.

South Korea

With population growth hovering well below the replacement rate, South Korea is scrambling to find ways to convince its citizens to start getting married earlier so they can grow their families faster. The Ministry of Health and Welfare began to promote "dating parties" in 2010, but as The New York Times explains, the country's social customs can sometimes get in the way of romance. Mingling with strangers is not typically encouraged in the country, making for disasters like the ten-minute matchmaking "flash mob" last winter, where thousands of young Koreans stood around giggling awkwardly before scurrying off as single as they came.