Births in Japan fall to record low in 2018
NHK -- Jun 08
Government statistics show that Japan's population is shrinking at a faster pace as births hit a new record low.

The Health, Labour and Welfare Ministry says the average number of children a woman gives birth to in her lifetime stood at 1.42 in 2018. That's slightly down from a year earlier.

Okinawa was the prefecture with the highest fertility rate at 1.89. Tokyo had the lowest at 1.20.

Almost 920,000 babies were born last year. That is the fewest since statistics began in 1899.

About 1.36 million people died, the most since the end of World War Two.

The number of deaths minus that of births was about 444,000, a record high for an eleventh year in a row.

The number of male-female couples who married last year stood at 586,000. That's the lowest since the end of World War Two.

去年1年間の結婚の件数が戦後、最も少なかったことが分かりました。 厚生労働省によりますと、去年1年間の婚姻件数は戦後、最も少ない58万6500組で、初めて60万組を下回りました。初婚の平均年齢は男性が31.1歳、女性が29.4歳となっています。また、去年1年間に生まれた赤ちゃんは91万8400人で、調査を開始して以来、最少となった一方、国内の死亡者数は136万2500人で戦後、最多でした。全体の人口は約44万4000人減って過去最大の減少幅になりました。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Aug 23
To boost the number of male employees taking paternity leave and promote female participation in the workforce, Japan's labor ministry decided to increase government subsidies for companies whose employees do so, sources close to the matter said Thursday. (Kyodo)
Aug 08
With a rising number of sexual violence cases on and off campus in recent times, some university students have begun signature-collection campaigns to petition their schools to deliver safer learning environments. (Japan Times)
Aug 03
The overwhelming majority of middle and high school students in Japan are required to wear uniforms, and so it’s no surprise that Japanese schools tend to have lots of other rules governing students’ personal appearance. One that’s been attracting controversy in recent years, though, is a requirement at some schools that all students must have black hair. (Japan Today)
Aug 02
Third-year students in Japan’s junior high schools struggle with speaking and writing in English, according to the results of this year’s nationwide achievement test conducted by the education ministry. (Japan Times)
Aug 02
Japan’s Immigration Services Agency said Thursday it will toughen eligibility standards for Japanese-language schools that can accept foreign students, effective Sept. 1. (Japan Times)
Jul 31
The average life expectancy reached a record high for both male and female Japanese people last year. It was more than five years longer than in 1989, the year the three-decade Japanese era of Heisei started. (NHK)
Jul 17
School-related matters led to more suicides last year among youth aged between 10 and 19 than any other issue, the government said Tuesday in its annual paper on the topic. (Japan Times)
Jul 15
Japan's Princess Mako has visited the ancient Inca city of Machu Picchu in Peru and a village that once had a Japanese immigrant as its chief. (NHK)
Jul 11
The population of Japanese nationals has fallen for the 10th straight year, while the ratio of foreign residents topped 2 percent for the first time. (NHK)
Jul 08
A log boat set off from Taiwan on Sunday on a journey of more than 200 kilometers to Yonaguni Island in Okinawa Prefecture, southern Japan. (NHK)