The estimated number of Japanese newborns fell to just 1.001 million in 2014 compared with 1.269 million registered deaths, the lowest birth-rate ever recorded and one that exacerbates the East Asian nation’s ongoing struggles with an aging and shrinking population.
“The number of reproductive-age women is on the decline,” an official at Japan’s health, labour and welfare ministry told Kyodo News, leading to a subsequent drop in the number of children, AFP reports.
The government has warned that by 2060, nearly 40% of the population will be aged 65 or over. Data released last April shows it is already difficult for the East Asian nation of to support the elderly and pensioners who currently make up 25% of its population.
- TIME's Top 100 Photos of 2022
- I Tested Positive for COVID-19 Right Before the Holidays. What Should I Do?
- Column: How To Create a Sense of Belonging In a Divided America
- How to Survive the Holidays if You're a Scrooge
- Life Expectancy Provides Evidence of How Far Black Americans Have Come
- The 10 Best Albums of 2022
- Iran Has a Long History of Protest and Activism
- 6 Ways to Give Better Gifts—Based on Science