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Birthrate hit record lows

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Reported by Kyodo News, June 7, 2002:

No. of Japan births, birthrate hit record lows in 2001

The number of babies born in Japan was a record low 1.17 million last year, down 20,000 from 2000, and the birthrate also hit an all-time low of 1.33, according to a Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry survey released Friday.
Japan's birthrate rose slightly to 1.36 in 2000 from a record low 1.34 in 1999 in line with a rise in the number of births likely triggered by the ''millennium effect,'' but the latest survey only confirms the birthrate decline is proceeding on a long-term basis, analysts said.

An estimate of Japan's population by 2050 compiled by the ministry and released in January was based on a forecast birthrate of 1.34 for 2001, but the actual rate was lower.

The estimated population is the basis for government policies on social security programs including pension premiums, but the fact that Japan's population is shrinking sooner than expected is likely to affect discussions on revisions of the public pension system in 2004, they said.

According to the 2001 ministry statistics, 1,170,665 babies were born in Japan last year, down 19,882.

The birthrate in cities was lower than average, including Tokyo at 1. The birthrate represents the average number of babies born to a woman in her lifetime.

The average age for first marriages for women increased by 0.2 year to 27.2, while the average age of mothers who gave birth to their first child also rose by 0.2 year to 28.2 in 2001.

The number of babies born to mothers in their late 20s fell by 20,816 last year.

The ministry said women's tendency to marry later and take time after marriage before giving birth are the major factors for the falling birthrate.

Meanwhile, a record high 285,917 couples divorced in 2001, and 970,313 people died.

The chief cause of death was cancer. The illness claimed more than 300,000 lives, accounting for 31% of all deaths, followed by heart disease at 15.3% and stroke at 13.6%.

A total of 29,333 people committed suicide in 2001, down slightly. Over 30,000 Japanese had taken their own lives annually over the past three years.

The natural increase in population, which is births minus deaths, was 200,352. In 14 of Japan's 47 prefectures, the number of deaths surpassed births.


Copyright © Kyodo News
 
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thomas

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Usually from newspaper web sites, mailing lists, other fora. A lot of articles are just found by accident.
 
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thomas

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I wish I could make a living from the site, lol! It's just a hobby. Browsing for news is a daily routine.
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thomas

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That's true. I am not too fond of pop-ups myself. I am just using one welcome pop-up window at our main page (urging visitors to subscribe to our mailing list). The banners are all part of our own banner exchange.
 
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