Japan's Baby Crisis: Why Does the Birth Rate Keep Falling?
Haruka Sakamoto, Senior Fellow, The Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research & Associate Professor, Tokyo Women's Medical University
Kenji Shibuya, Research Director, The Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research

14:00-15:00 Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Language: The speech and Q & A will be in English.

Japan is heading towards a demographic crisis, with the number of births in 2002 falling below 800,000 for the first time since the collection of statistical data. At this rate, Japan's population could drop from 125 million to 88 million by 2065. Japan's birthrate of 1.3 births per woman is among the lowest in the world, although still well above South Korea's 0.78.

While factors such as Japan's high cost of living, limited living space, and insufficient childcare support are gradually being addressed by the government, experts are still baffled by the continuous decline. They fear the measures taken will not be effective. Some argue that there are other, hard-to-change factors behind the demographic problem, such as changes in the values of younger people and an increased education burden. More unorthodox explanations for people avoiding relationships and children include Japan's otaku culture and even the influence of anime's two-dimensional world.

Experts in the field Haruka Sakamoto and Kenji Shibuya will present an in-depth analysis of the true causes behind the declining fertility rate in Japan, drawing on extensive data obtained by the surveys they have conducted to date.

How to attend:
Please register at with your name, the name of your media outlet, and FCCJ membership number. Due to space restrictions attendance will be limited. Doors open 15 minutes before the event. Please sign in, giving your name and contact details at the reception, and have your temperature taken before proceeding.

How to watch online:
Livestreaming of the press events will be available and video of this event will be uploaded to our FCCJ YouTube channel.

How to ask questions:
Members watching the event online can submit questions for the speakers in advance using this submission form.

TV crew: Please make a reservation at Doors open for TV crews only at 30 minutes before the event.

Professional Activities Committee