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Japan gets it – have babies or your culture dies!

Japan gets it – have babies or your culture dies!

Tokyo funds matchmaking parties to boost birth rate

Japan’s birth rate is at its lowest since records began in 1899 and if current trends continue it will lose a third of its population in the next 50 years

A matchmaking party in Tokyo, Japan

A matchmaking party in Tokyo, Japan Photo: Bloomberg

The Japanese government is funding matchmaking events in a desperate attempt to boost a birth rate that has halved over the past six decades.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has allocated an additional 3 billion yen (£17.7 billion) in this fiscal year’s budget for birthrate-boosting programmes as part of a strategy to reverse the nation’s shrinking population.

Japan is home to one of the fastest ageing societies in the world, with the population shrinking at a record 244,000 in 2013 alone, according to government figures.

The support of marriage – and the active encouragement of young people to settle down – is regarded by government policy-makers as a key strategy for boosting the nation’s birth rate.

As a result, local authorities are now able to apply for central government grants of up to 40 million yen (£237,000) for projects relating to supporting marriage and boosting birth rates, according to Bloomberg.



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