Pretty much every developed country struggles with high costs on childcare. But only 3 approaches that I think can reduce the (visible) cost to parents:

  1. Invite more foreign workers from countries with low wages
  2. Increase subsidies
  3. Reduce regulations

Are there any developed countries that have decided to try approach #3 and drastically reduced their regulations on childcare provision? And did they see a corresponding decrease in prices?

  • 2
    Unless by "reduce regulation" you mean "allow any number of children to be 'cared for' by any number of adults", which tends towards "lock as many children in a room as fit"
    – Caleth
    Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 16:09
  • @Caleth yes, though that's not the only regulation resulting in higher prices. But parents have much more skin in the game than bureaucrats so they're excellent judges of what provider ratios are appropriate. Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 16:43
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    I do not see how the [education] tag applies to this question. Perhaps, [social-policy] is a better tag.
    – Rick Smith
    Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 17:30
  • 1
    Child care is almost completely unregulated in many, if not most countries, even fairly developed ones.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented Jul 14, 2023 at 0:34
  • 2
    @JonathanReez Childcare is cheap in absolute terms in poor countries where average salaries are low, so it is not actually cheap for the people who live there. It is expensive in developed countries where salaries are high, even for unqualified labor. Can you point to a single example of a rich country where legal child care is cheap?
    – quarague
    Commented Jul 14, 2023 at 9:28

1 Answer 1


A partial answer as I'm on the move atm, and this is just one example, but had a recent discussion on this subject:



National child care policy for ages 0-6

To alleviate the national security issue posed by the declining birth rate, the government is expanding fertility treatment subsidies and building a supportive, friendly environment for pregnancy and childrearing. Amendments to the Early Childhood Education and Care Act are also diversifying service models for childhood education and care, and expediting the addition of slots at public preschools and child care facilities.

Since July 2018, the government has promoted an array of measures to counter declining birth rates such as increasing affordable education and care service capacities, reducing tuition costs, granting childrearing allowances, and raising salaries for child care and education personnel. Through all these measures, the government is throwing its full support behind childrearing households, giving young people the confidence to marry and start a family.


Taiwan has pretty much changed its policies to counter low birth rate.

Subsidy example:


  • 3
    Can you provide examples of where Taiwan has explicitly lowered regulations?
    – xyldke
    Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 6:28
  • 1
    This would be a good answer on a question, which we've had before, about reversing declining birth rates. Child care is part of possible government interventions. However, this question specifically asks about lowering childcare regulations to get more childcare and this answer doesn't go anywhere near that subject. Commented Jul 13, 2023 at 18:55

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