Sunday, July 02, 2006

Japan's population begins to shrink

According to demographers, Japan's population began to shrink last year, a trend that is expect to continue until 2050.

By that year, Japan's population may shrink from 127 million to 100 million due to low birthrates and a growing elderly population.

Despite decades of effort, Japan has been unable to reverse this trend using pro-natal policies designed to encourage Japanese citizens into having more babies. And with the world's highest longevity rates, Japan has to begin thinking of how it will take care of its massive and growing elderly population.

In 2004, Sony chairman Iwao Nakatani called for mass migration to ease the demographic crisis. However, conservative Japanese continue to resist such changes.