Japan is at an impasse as it becomes a country of old people

Japan has just lost its place world’s third largest economy (after the United States, China), and is also overtaking Germany. Expectations also indicate that this will happen in the coming years behind india, This is not surprising because Japanese society is very serious. demographic problem There is no solution in sight.

He was born in the country in 2023 758,631 children, Which shows a decrease of 5.1% compared to the previous year. If we look at the historical series it is about Lat minimum figures Since Japan began collecting this data in 1899. For its part, the death rate remains stable approximately 1.5 million deaths Annual. If we combine this reality with immigration and emigration, we see that the Japanese population has been declining in recent years. In 2022, it was 122.42 million, whereas two decades ago, in 2022, It exceeded 127 million.

The population of Japan is very old.  (Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images)The population of Japan is very old.  (Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images)

The population of Japan is very old. (Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images) (Tomohiro Ohsumi via Getty Images)

Fertility rate is necessary to stabilize population 2.1 children per womanbut only in japanese nation Reaches 1.36.

Japan is considered oldest country in the world, About 30% population is above 65 years of age, While one in 10 is 80 or older. A century ago there were barely 150 centenarians, whereas now this number has increased to 92,139. The result was that the percentage of the active population that is of working age, It is only 59%However up to 13% of people continue to work after 64.

This increase in the country’s aging rate has already had devastating consequences for its economy: since the mid-1990s A pause, And as suspicion grows sustainability of the social security system Long term.

Solutions such as pension reform or raising the retirement age to 70 are already being proposed, but the reality is that these will be short-term measures that will not solve the underlying problem: an inverted population pyramid that raises serious doubts. Japan’s future.

Like many other Western countries, arrival of immigrationThat is, a younger population could help change this situation, however, Japan has always been very reticent about this possibility. The message is echoing from behind closed doors: Do not open immigration doors And do not accept foreign workers.

But this is happening behind closed doors a soft opening which helps reduce labor shortage Patents in many industries. They are Peruvian, Brazilian and other nationality workers (although of Japanese origin) who in the past received residence visa, Additionally, young trainees from diverse backgrounds who come to the country Professional Internship Program.

Demonstration in Japan in favor of immigration and refugees.  (Photo by David Mareuil/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)Demonstration in Japan in favor of immigration and refugees.  (Photo by David Mareuil/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Demonstration in Japan in favor of immigration and refugees. (Photo by David Mareuil/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images) (Anadolu via Getty Images)

In the early years of the 21st century, officials talked about Get up to 10 million employees Foreign, but various proposals did not work. It should be borne in mind that Japan This is a very traditional country And there is a great fear of losing their ethnic homogeneity, which is a guarantee of stability and social cohesion. As such, immigration has never been encouraged.

Currently, there are just a few more 2.2 million people born abroadWhich represents only 1.7% of the total population.

Experts say it will be important to expand beyond immigration Participation of elders and women In the workforce. In this sense, raising children is still seen as a secondary responsibility, while parents have a supporting role rather than an active one. In addition, it will also be necessary to help those who are 40 years of age or older and who have paused their professional careers due to motherhood. Establish a viable business model.

There is no doubt that Japan has several major challenges This will mark the next decades in the years to come. they are necessary deep reform And the authorities should act as soon as possible.

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