23 Jan. (EUROPA PRESS) –
The Prime Minister of Japan, Fumio Kishida, has announced this Monday that combating the low birth rate will be the main priority of his Government and has revealed that in 2022 fewer than 800,000 births were registered.
Kishida has thus promised before the Japanese Diet or Parliament a package of “unprecedented” measures to promote the birth rate using stable financial sources that guarantee the achievement of these objectives, according to the Japanese public television NHK.
The president has assured that Japan is at a “critical crossroads” 77 years after World War II “on the verge of not being able to continue functioning as a society” and therefore must “break with current practices” to build “a society, a economy and an international order adapted to the new era”.
Japan has 125 million inhabitants and 28 percent are over 65 years of age. The birth rate was 1.34 children per woman and 800,000 births in 2022, while in recent years there have been more than 1.44 million deaths per year. Studies already predict that Japan will have less than 53 million inhabitants by the end of the century if the trend is not reversed.
In addition, Kishida has proposed raising the defense budget to 40 trillion yen (about 310,000 million euros) for the next five years. A quarter of these funds will come from tax increases.
Kishida has also mentioned the rise in prices and has pointed out that the Government will try to raise wages and accelerate the labor reform that is planned to penalize temporary employment and promote recycling training.
In the field of energy, Kishida highlighted his government’s commitment to the construction of state-of-the-art nuclear reactors and the extension of the operation of the plants currently underway.
RESPONSE OF THE OPPOSITION
The president of the Constitutional Democratic Party, Kenta Izumi, has reproached Kishida for the fact that in a situation of fewer funds available to the Government, it is only the defense budget that increases.
He has also criticized Kishida for his declared intention but without concrete measures to combat the low birth rate and has recalled that the ruling Liberal Democratic Party has been in power for ten years promising a response to this problem without achieving results.
The Secretary General of the Japan Innovation Party,
Fumitake Fujita, has questioned the financing of the increase in military spending and has raised the need to innovate to obtain the necessary funds.
The spokesman for the Japanese Communist Party, Kazuo Shii, has announced that the people will not support the increase in military spending because Kishida has not given “any convincing explanation” about the reasons for it and has warned that it means acquiring the ability to attack enemy bases. and an unprecedented expansion of Japan’s military power.