National

70 percent of Japanese parents with infants want more kids: survey

JIJI

The proportion of parents with infants who want to have more children stands at around 70 percent, a private survey found Wednesday.

The joint survey was conducted by the University of Tokyo and education service provider Benesse Holdings Inc. between September and October 2017.

It covered 2,975 mothers and 2,624 fathers in Japan with a child under 1 year old.

According to the survey, 74.1 percent of mothers and 68.8 percent of fathers answered that they want more kids.

However, 28.6 percent of mothers and 22.3 percent of fathers who said they want more kids believed it would be difficult in reality. Of those respondents, 80 percent cited the financial burden as a factor. Others cited the physical burden and the difficulty of balancing home life and work.

Many of those planning to have more children were couples who assist each other with housework and child-rearing or have the support of their families or neighbors.

For fathers who help out at home, their bosses tended to be more sympathetic to family needs, allowing the fathers to leave work without having to do overtime, according to the survey.

“It is crucial to secure across-the-board support at workplaces for child-rearing,” said Kiyomi Akita, a University of Tokyo professor.