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The proportion of elderly people in Japan is the highest in the world.
Tokyo CNN –
More than 10% of Japan’s population is now 80 years old or older, the government said on Monday. This is the latest worrying milestone in the demographic crisis of the rapidly graying country.
According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Japan’s elderly population, defined as those aged 65 and over, is also at a record high, accounting for 29.1% of the population – the highest in the world.
The ministry released the figures to mark “Respect for the Aged Day”, a holiday in the country that is also facing a falling birth rate and a shrinking workforce, which could impact pension and health care funding as demand from the aging population increases Population increases.
05:58 – Source: CNN
Japan’s rural communities are dying out. The problem is that so are the cities
Japan’s population has declined steadily since the economic boom in the 1980s, with a birth rate of 1.3 – well below the 2.1 needed to maintain a stable population without immigration. Deaths in Japan have exceeded births for more than a decade, posing a growing problem for leaders of the world’s third-largest economy.
The country also has one of the highest life expectancies in the world, contributing to the increase in the elderly population.
To address growing labor shortages and in the hopes of revitalizing the stagnant economy, the Japanese government has been encouraging more seniors and housewives to re-enter the workforce over the past decade.
To some extent, that message has worked: Japan now has a record 9.12 million older workers, a number that has increased for 19 consecutive years. Workers aged 65 and older now make up more than 13% of the national workforce, the Interior Ministry said on Monday.
The employment rate of older people in Japan is among the highest of any major economy, it said.
But even supporting older workers is not enough to offset the social and economic effects of the demographic crisis. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida warned in January that Japan was “on the verge of being unable to sustain its social functions.”
He added that supporting children’s education was the government’s “most important policy” and that solving the problem “simply cannot wait any longer.”
Nearby are China, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan, which are experiencing similar crises and struggling to encourage young people to have more children amid rising living costs and social discontent.