Births in Japan drop below 800,000 from 1.5 million in the 1980s

Births in Japan drop below 800,000 from 1.5 million in the 1980s

Kanako Mita and Sawako Utsumi

Modern Tokyo Times

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida recently counseled that Japan is “on the brink” – concerning the declining birth rate. Yet why is the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) saying this now?

In 1990, the birth rate hit 1.5. Accordingly, for the last few decades, the birth rate in Japan is usually around 1.4. Hence, despite piecemeal policies to increase the birth rate, nothing dramatic was implemented unlike in Hungary.

The confirmation that births fell just below 800,000 in 2022 from 1.5 million in the early 1980s is a huge concern. However, this concern – similar to static wages and pension problems – began several decades ago. Therefore, unlike the favorable economic period of the 1960s to 1980s, Japan is now blighted by the highest ratio of debt of any developed nation and a greater onus on people to work longer concerning the economic malaise and rising cost of living.

The actual number of births to Japanese parents in Japan is 770,000. Thus, the other 30,000 births are either Japanese births abroad or non-Japanese.

Lee Jay Walker says, “The majority of people will naturally agree with Kishida that it is essential to increase the birth rate. Yet, the ruling LDP knew about this issue several decades ago – so it is difficult to trust the sincerity of Kishida. Also, Japan will find it difficult to generate enough taxes to fund the birth rate (similar to child-friendly Hungary), double the military budget (not deemed essential by many), and provide adequate pensions.”

By November last year, real wages declined by 3.8% concerning inflation.

Deaths reached a record high of 1,582,033 in 2022.

The World Economic Forum last year ranked Japan 116th out of 146 nations covered by the Global Gender Gap Report. Accordingly, Japan is a mirage.

Kyodo News reports, “Japan’s fiscal state is in dire straits, with debt more than twice the size of its economy. A record tax revenue of 69.44 trillion yen is estimated for fiscal 2023, but the government needs to issue government bonds worth 35.62 trillion yen to fund the state budget.”

It is difficult to trust the ruling LDP that refused to take adequate measures during the economic boom period – and then began to increase consumption tax during a period of endless static wages, along with chipping away at the pension system.

Even worse, many of the current ruling LDP at the top belong to the same dynastic family members that generated the mess in the first place.

Modern Tokyo News is part of the Modern Tokyo Times group Modern Tokyo Times – International News and Japan News – Sawako Utsumi’s website and Modern Tokyo Times artist Modern Tokyo News – Tokyo News and International News