The birth rate crisis, according to the PM of Japan, “cannot wait.”

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida stated on Monday that Japan's declining birthrate and aging population pose an immediate threat to society and pledged to address the issue by establishing a new government agency.

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Japan has the world’s second-highest proportion of people 65 and older, behind only the tiny state of Monaco, according to World Bank data. While birth rates are declining in many developed nations, Japan’s situation is particularly dire due to its high proportion of people 65 and older.

In a policy address at the start of a new parliament session, Kishida told lawmakers, “The number of births dropped below 800,000 last year, according to estimates.”

He stated, “Japan is poised to determine whether we can continue to function as a society.”

Focusing on child-rearing policies is an issue that must be addressed immediately and cannot be put off.

The conservative leader claimed that the “sustainability” of the world’s third-largest economy was the goal of his policies, which included establishing the Children and Families Agency in April.

Kishida went on to say that he eventually wants the government to spend twice as much on programs related to children.

He stated, “To reverse the (low) birth rate, we must build a child-first social economy.”

With 125 million people, Japan has long struggled to provide for its rapidly increasing elderly population.

Due to factors such as rising living costs, an increase in the number of women entering the workforce, and people choosing to have children later, birth rates are slowing in many nations, including Japan’s closest neighbors.

Last week, official data showed that China’s population fell for the first time in more than six decades in 2022.

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