Regarding the story “Number of kids declined by a third during Heisei” in the May 6 edition, I’m sure the decrease in the number of children is one of the most serious issues confronting Japan. Although most Japanese know this problem should be solved as soon as possible, but as of now, even though Japan has entered the new Reiwa Era, we have no way to achieve this. There are three reasons why.

The first area concerns expenses. The average salary per month for new graduates is ¥200,000, so they can’t be eager to have any children. They are convinced that in the long run, the total cost to bring up children to the age of 20 is ¥14 million. This is the gravest issue of the three.

The second area concerns the opportunity for work. These days, because of increased job opportunities women can push giving birth to later in their life. This leads to marrying later in life as well. It’s important to understand that work opportunities can lead to a declining birthrate.

The third area concerns an increase in the number of shy people who have no interest in getting married — “herbivore people” as they are known in Japan. Nowadays, it is said that a modest personality exacerbates this problems, so Japanese men have to be more outgoing both for themselves and for the future of this country.

In conclusion, the decline of the population, especially children, has become a critical issue for Japan. Generating enough money to bring up children is a burden many adults find difficult to overcome. Concerning the increase of shy people, it is obvious that Japanese people must become more active in order to increase the population.


The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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