Population control is an agenda for most countries today. But looks like Japan is taking the lead naturally. According to official figures released on Wednesday, Japan’s population dropped by a record amount in 2022 as the nation works to overcome its historically low birthrates.
After tiny Monaco, Japan has the second-oldest population in the world, and the prime minister of the country, Fumio Kishida, warned in January that the country was “on the verge of whether we can continue to function as a society.”
According to a report by the internal affairs ministry, the number of Japanese decreased by 800,523, or 0.65 percent, to 122,423,038 last year from the previous year. Besides, there was a 10.7% increase in the number of foreign residents with addresses registered in Japan. The country’s overall population being 125.41 million, decreased by just over 500,000 from the previous year.
Population Peaks And Falls
Since the ministry began compiling figures in 2013, the growth in Japan’s immigrant population was the largest year-over-year increase. According to the ministry, foreigners today make up around 2.4% of Japan’s population.
Due to a lowering birth rate, Japan’s population has been progressively declining since 2008, when it reached its peak. In 2017, there were just 771,801 births nationwide, a record low.
In order to combat the declining birthrate, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has made it one of his top policy objectives. Furthermore, He has also committed to securing annual funding of about 3.5 trillion yen ($25.2 billion) over the following three years for a new childcare package. The package includes increased higher education subsidies, childbirth, and rearing allowances.
What Caused A Low Birthrate?
Japan is one of the most costly countries to raise a child. Particularly high housing and education costs might make it challenging for families to finance raising a kid. Fewer couples have children in Japan as a consequence of the country’s high cost of living, constrained space, and dearth of city-based childcare facilities that make raising children difficult. Other factors affecting Japan’s dropping birth rate particularly include the declining marriage rate, financial stress, childcare demands, delayed childbirth, and infertility.
Nevertheless, schools are closing as a result of population loss. With fewer kids, there are fewer people to fill the classes, and some schools can no longer support themselves financially.
The rising cost of caring for the elderly, who make up a higher share of the population, is draining the country’s budget. According to World Bank data, Japan now has the second-highest percentage of individuals over 65 worldwide.