National

More than half of Japanese young people not interested in studying overseas, survey shows

JIJI, Kyodo

A government survey has found that over half of youths and young adults in Japan do not want to study abroad.

The finding was included in the 2019 white paper on children and young people, which was adopted at a Cabinet meeting Tuesday.

When asked whether they want to study abroad in the future, 53.2 percent of Japanese respondents said they do not, the highest figure among the seven nations covered in the study.

Germany and Britain were a distant second and third, with 35.5 percent and 34.8 percent, respectively, saying they do not want to study abroad.

Regarding whether they want to live abroad in the future, the proportion of people wishing to stay in their home country forever came to 42.7 percent for Japanese respondents, also the highest among the seven countries.

The survey also found that Japanese youths taking part in volunteer work were more eager to study abroad. The share of people keen to study abroad reached 64.0 percent for those currently engaged in volunteering activities, and it was 41.7 percent for those who have volunteered in the past.

The survey, conducted last November and December, received responses from about 7,500 people aged between 13 and 29 in Japan, South Korea, the United States, Britain, Germany, France and Sweden.

In a separate government survey, which was also approved at the Cabinet meeting Tuesday, almost half of single people who wish to get married said they have been unable to find a suitable partner, with 61.4 percent of them stating they are not doing anything to change their situation.

A lack of opportunities to meet an appropriate partner, not having the financial resources to get married, or lacking the social skills to get along with the opposite sex were cited as the main reasons in the survey, which was included in the annual report on Japan’s shrinking population.

The Cabinet Office online survey of around 4,000 men and women aged between 20 to 40 years old, conducted last December, found that 46.8 percent of respondents said they had not been able to find a suitable partner despite a desire to tie the knot.

The outcome prompted the government to recognize the need to continue measures supporting marriage amid the country’s aging society.

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