Policy / Systems / Technology

April 12, 2008


Employment Group Recommends Policies to Slow Decline of Japan's Labor Force

Keywords: Government NGO / Citizen Policy / Systems 

The Employment Policy Study Group, commissioned by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, published its report December 25, 2007, on the recommended direction of priority policies on labor and employment in Japan for the next five years or so. Based on its vision of Japanese economic society up to 2030, the Group predicts a decline of the labor force in 2030 by an estimated 10.7 million from the 2006 level, which is a more serious situation than was estimated in its previous report in July 2005.

The Group points out that, if appropriate measures are taken to enable all people with the will and ability to work to participate in the labor market, then the labor force would increase by approximately 6 million, including 0.9 million youth, 2.7 million middle aged (mostly women), and 2.4 million elderly, compared to the case where such measures are not taken. As a result, the reduction of the labor force in 2030 would be lowered to 4.8 million. The measures include providing support to the elderly for job security and to women in fulfilling their job and household responsibilities.

The Japanese population began to decline in 2005 -- and is expected to continue to decline in the future -- while the number of people over 75 years old reached an estimated 10 percent of the total in November 2007. As the number of cheap laborers and workers under unstable arrangements are increasing under growing pressure to reduce costs, in line with the advance of economic globalization and technological innovation, the Group highlighted long working hours of regular employees as a problem. To overcome such challenges and realize the sustainable development of society and the economy, it recommends the creation of a fair and diverse society, where all people can work if they have the will and ability, participate in community activities throughout their lifetime, and enjoy a balanced life of job and family at the various life stages in order to develop and make the best use of their abilities.

- Employment/Labor Policies Proposed for Japan's Era of Declining Population (Related JFS article)

Posted: 2008/04/12 04:58:09 PM