The increased longevity of Japanese people is put down to a traditionally healthy diet that is high in fish, vegetables and fruit, the excellent public healthcare system and improvements in medical care.
And while those are all positive developments, there is a distinct downside to having one of the world's most rapidly ageing societies.
"The basic problem is that there are lot of elderly people, they are healthier than ever before, they are living longer - and this problem is only going to get bigger," Robert Dujarric, director of the Institute of Contemporary Asian Studies at the Japan campus of Temple University, told DW.The 'problem' is, who's going to pay for all the government's great ideas;
"And even though they have known this problem was looming over us all, the Japanese government has not really done much to fix the problem," Professor Dujarric added.
....The central government has promised additional places at nursery schools - but then negated that positive move by reducing child allowances - and some local authorities and companies have taken small-scale measures in an effort to encourage people to have more children, but they are not having a visible impact yet.
The prediction being;
... there will be a mere 49.59 million Japanese by 2100, a decline of more than 61 percent on the 2010 figure.
Added to the concern over the falling birth rate are the obvious economic consequences of a huge imbalance in the ages of the population. In the not-too-distant future, experts warn, there will be too few working-age people paying for the health care and pensions of the elderly population.Karl Marx said the state would wither away, but it turns out it's the people who are doing that. With the predictable consequences for the Ponzi scheme that is Japan.
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