Japan’s prime minister is sounding the alarm on his nation’s shrinking inhabitants and calling for measures to assist one of many world’s oldest societies replenish its citizen base.
“Our nation is on the cusp of whether or not it will probably keep its societal features,” Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida stated in a coverage speech on the opening of this yr’s parliamentary session.
“It is now or by no means in the case of insurance policies relating to births and child-rearing – it is a matter that merely can’t wait any longer,” he added.
The prime minister stated he’ll submit a plan that can double child-related incentives by the summer season after the nation noticed a file low variety of births in 2021.
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The feedback from Kishida come as Japan has launched into a number of totally different efforts to assist encourage households to maneuver to rural areas which have suffered inhabitants declines, together with providing households 1 million yen ($7,500) per baby, to maneuver out of Tokyo and into the countryside.
The rural cities and villages have marketed themselves as areas conducive to households with charming areas, quick access to baby care, and the supply of younger males because the nation continues to witness decreasing birthrates and a struggling financial system.
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The variety of births in Japan totaled 811,604 in 2021, which was the bottom recorded because the stat began being tracked in 1899. At the identical time, the variety of folks 100 years outdated or extra stands at 90,500 in comparison with solely 153 in 1963.
The authorities additionally just lately introduced a plan to supply advantages of 5,000 yen ($38) per particular person per thirty days to residents of Tokyo aged 18 or younger to help mother and father with the price of their youngsters’s schooling.
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Tokyo has additionally applied a “Babies First” program which arms out 100,000 yen present playing cards to folks whose youngsters have been born after January 2009 for use on baby care objects.
Fox News’ Sarah Rumpf and Reuters contributed to this report.