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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 June 26 - July 2  > Gov’t report suggests low birthrate is due to unstable jobs and low income
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2013 June 26 - July 2 [LABOR]

Gov’t report suggests low birthrate is due to unstable jobs and low income

June 26, 2013
The government on June 25 published a white paper on the declining birthrate suggesting that behind the problem lies an increase in young workers who are facing unstable employment and low incomes.

The white paper points out that the average age of first marriage for women reached 29.0 years in 2011, up by 3.8 from 25.2 in 1980. It also states that the average age of women having their first child was 30.1 years old in 2011, exceeding 30 years of age for the first time ever.

The government report states that the birth rate in Japan keeps declining due to trends toward later marriage, older motherhood, and fewer marriages caused by the severe working conditions young people are facing.

Of male workers aged 30-34 years, the rate of marriage of non-regular employees is half that of regular employees.

For workers in their 30s, the largest group in terms of annual income was 5.0-6.9 million yen in 1997. Ten years later, the largest group shifted down to a 3.0-3.9 million yen level.

The white paper said that the most common reason why married couples have fewer children than they actually want is: “Because it costs too much to raise and educate children” (60.4%).

The amount of public expenditures on family policies in Japan is only 0.96% of GDP which is about one third of that in European countries, the government report points out.

Related past article

> Child birthrate decreasing while non-regular workers increasing [June 4, 2013]

> Support young workers to improve low birthrate [June 7, 2012]
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