Preliminary government data suggests that Japan’s fertility crisis is worsening, as the data from the first seven months of this year shows the sharpest drop in births in 30 years.
Data from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare show that births fell 5.9% percent from January to July year on year, and the number of women in their childbearing age are shrinking, not to mention the increasing number of women who decide to delay having children, or decide not to have any children at all.
During this period, the total number of births was 518,590. For the whole of 2018, the official tally of births was 918,397, a figure which however excludes babies born to foreigners in Japan and Japanese babies born abroad.
The decline in births is "happening faster than official projections had envisioned," said Yasushi Mineshima, a spokesman for the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research.
Japan's birth rate has been falling since the late 1970s. In 2005, it reached a record low of 1.26, but then seemed to be on a path of recovery until it started to fall again in 2016, according to government figures. By 2018, it was at 1.42.
To maintain a stable population, countries need a fertility rate of 2.1. Last year, it was 1.72 in the United States but only 0.98 -- or less than one baby per woman -- in South Korea, where fertility rates have fallen to their lowest level since records began.
More details of this news over at CNN.
How do you think can this be solved?
(Image Credit: DanEvans/ Pixabay)