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Geopolitical and economic concerns are dominating headlines ahead of the upcoming House of Councilors election, putting the critical issue of Japan's stubbornly low birthrate on the back-burner at a time when advocates say it needs to be at the forefront of the government's thinking.

Experts on social and family issues stress the urgent need to create an environment that encourages people to have more children and prevent a future crisis through investment in child care and other initiatives.

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