national

Families in Tokyo to get ¥5,000 per child to address falling birthrate

104 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2023 GPlusMedia Inc.

104 Comments
Login to comment

Japan's solution for failing birthrate by only providing 5000 yen allowances. No significant changes for availability nursery home or paternity/maternity leave so far.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/13/japanese-man-sues-asics-saying-he-was-punished-for-taking-paternity-leave

12 ( +23 / -11 )

¥5000 per month?! That'll solve all the problems!

18 ( +37 / -19 )

Where is this money coming from.

So stay in Tokyo get ¥5,000 monthly.

Leave Tokyo get one time ¥1 million each child.

I didn't know the government had so much money to give away!

So seeing I had my 2 and they are now adults.

I did my part, can I get tax relief or back compensation equivalence.

Why the h..l do I now has to pay for someone else's children?

You had kids your responsibility.

Leave me some money to maybe retire one day!

-20 ( +11 / -31 )

The Tokyo metropolitan government plans to provide families in the capital with a monthly allowance of around 5,000 yen per child aged through 18 regardless of household income levels, as part of efforts to address the rapidly falling birthrate in Japan.

Saw the news last night interviewing families with children on the street about the 5000 yennies.

Kids said they would use it to buy online gaming tokens and swag.

New Capitalism?

-5 ( +9 / -14 )

Back home we have one group that consistently produce more children than any other group.

Single mothers on welfare, more kids more money.

What does that get society? Another generation on welfare.

Sure more people but they are not productive in society.

So now we have the government offering more money to people to have kids, people that already cannot afford kids, so they will have kids like them adults that cannot afford the kids they will have.

If you cannot afford to have kids, best not to otherwise you will just be adding another person that I'm the future will need even more government money (our taxes) to raise their children.

-22 ( +9 / -31 )

I'm gonna have me 9 kids plenty quick quick

3 ( +11 / -8 )

LOL..

1 ( +8 / -7 )

If we're going to just flat out waste Tax Revenue,

I'd prefer that money to be spent on foster kids education through Unicef or some such.

Yet, here we are throwing money around without any real thought.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

5,000 yen a month is pissing in the ocean. Decent childcare, flexible working, banning presenteeism etc is what is needed. Social policies, not token gestures thought up by decrepit men who left raising their children to their wives. Utterly clueless.

22 ( +28 / -6 )

5000円?

Why do we not see dancing in the streets?

7 ( +19 / -12 )

Pachinko places will be rubbing their hands with glee over this, I’m sure.

Wife and I won’t have any more kids so they are just wasting money giving it to people like me for our 2 kids. Should just spend all this money on day care facilities, family support etc instead to make having kids easier rather than just cheaper.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

Hilarious. Headlines earlier this week: Tokyo paying families to LEAVE.

Do they want more people or less people squashed into Tokyo?

Make up your minds.

16 ( +20 / -4 )

Woo! Hoo! Fifty bucks a month per child. That should nearly cover the cost of the rice they eat every month, if they only eat rice. That's ¥60,000 per year. It wouldn't even cover the cost of school shoes for a year.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

Why are you giving it to those who already have kids? If it's to address a 'declining birth rate' bribe those who don't have kids.

Typical Japanese counter intuitive thinking.

-8 ( +8 / -16 )

Back home we have one group that consistently produce more children than any other group.

Single mothers on welfare, more kids more money.

What does that get society? Another generation on welfare.

Sure more people but they are not productive in society.

So now we have the government offering more money to people to have kids, people that already cannot afford kids, so they will have kids like them adults that cannot afford the kids they will have.

If you cannot afford to have kids, best not to otherwise you will just be adding another person that I'm the future will need even more government money (our taxes) to raise their children.

What a presumptuous and discriminatory thing to say. And what group are you part of dare I ask?

Having or not having money is not a prerequisite to being a great parent and raising children to be a productive member of society.

S

16 ( +19 / -3 )

Have any of these politicians tried to buy anything at all for 5000 yen a month?

10 ( +13 / -3 )

A few things that could really make a difference but won't happen:

Increase wages so mothers don't have to work in order for the family not to wallow in poverty.

Mandate more maternity leave for mothers.

Stop the scam with capitalists and petty bourgeois going to hostess bars and claiming it as a business expense so tax payers foot the bill. This would see 90% of hostess bars go out of business and a huge number of young women living a normal life with normal relationships.

Increase taxes on the richest 5% of the population to pay for it.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

SvenToday  08:14 am JST

A few things that could really make a difference but won't happen:

Increase wages so mothers don't have to work in order for the family not to wallow in poverty.

Mandate more maternity leave for mothers.

Stop the scam with capitalists and petty bourgeois going to hostess bars and claiming it as a business expense so tax payers foot the bill. This would see 90% of hostess bars go out of business and a huge number of young women living a normal life with normal relationships.

Increase taxes on the richest 5% of the population to pay for it.

The richest 5% have no income from a job, it’s all capital gains so they pay almost no tax at all.

First thing should be to put all income on equal footing, otherwise those who already have amassed millions continue to gain exponential benefits compared to the people working.

Next step should be to have a maximum cap on dividends/executive pay vs average worker salary in the company.

Third, cut the subcontracting chains to a maximum of 2 steps. Otherwise the middle men eat all the money.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

You don’t make children because you get money. When will Japan understand that money doesn’t solve every issue?! This might also be good to stop the growing massive debt here that’s now at over 250% of GDP. Stop throwing money around, as we can se it ha t solved anything in the last 20 years

8 ( +10 / -2 )

@Ifd66 elections coming up…. Got to throw some money around to get re-elected I guess - you’re obviously spot on

1 ( +3 / -2 )

What they need to do is get rid of the cram schools, make high schools free for all students who wish to enter, and parents will have more than 5,000 yen in their pockets.

When a father abandons his family leaving a mother financially holding the house down solo there needs to be laws in place like N. America where liberties like passports are removed.

Also, the orphanages where there are a number of unwanted children there is a desperate need to find them homes before creating more children let's take care of the ones who need loved on.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

They don't get it. Not enough people want kids anymore. It's a world wide trend and is only accelerating. Japan is just leading it. You're never going to get to 2.1 no matter how much money you throw at things.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

The richest 5% have no income from a job, it’s all capital gains so they pay almost no tax at all.

First thing should be to put all income on equal footing, otherwise those who already have amassed millions continue to gain exponential benefits compared to the people working.

Next step should be to have a maximum cap on dividends/executive pay vs average worker salary in the company.

Third, cut the subcontracting chains to a maximum of 2 steps. Otherwise the middle men eat all the money.

Very insightful and makes perfect sense but this isn't capitalism circa 1953. This is capitalism 2023. It won't happen.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

5000 Yen = $50.8 Canadian dollars = Cost of a simple restaurant meal.

This is a fantastically inexpensive way to raise the birthrate in Japan!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Cool...then on the other hand we,ve just had an article the other day talking about 3 million yen support funds for families with kids to move out of Tokyo. Contradictory much?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Yeah, those 5,000 yen a month will make me wanna have tons of kids...

6 ( +7 / -1 )

5,000 yen!?

How about this, the families will pay the government 2,500 yen a month to just Leave Them Alone and stop interfering in their private lives.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Makes you wonder what the requirements are to be a politician. An elementary school graduation diploma?

6 ( +8 / -2 )

What a presumptuous and discriminatory thing to say. And what group are you part of dare I ask?

Actually it isn't presumption, it is facts based on statistics, it may not be what you like but it is a fact.

Multigenerational welfare is now a major problem in western countries.

It is all common sense.

If my father teaches me to work hard the chances I will do just that are higher.

If my father is a deadbeat dad, my mother on welfare the chances are that I will end up the same.

We are learning slowly but just giving money doesn't make people appreciate it , on the contrary it makes them expect more.

Look at the comments here.

¥5,000 isn't enough for some here, others say free of cheaper day-care instead etc...

So my point is obvious as we see those with children looking at this money and saying they want more!

-13 ( +4 / -17 )

If my father is a deadbeat dad, my mother on welfare the chances are that I will end up the same.

What about when the mom is a deadbeat?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Also, the orphanages where there are a number of unwanted children there is a desperate need to find them homes before creating more children let's take care of the ones who need loved on.

You cannot find homes when the government has the most bizarre rules, restrictions, age limits, etc...in order to adopt, then there are the "undocumented" children left in hospitals by "foreign" women that gave a false name the government knows that it is a 99% probability the biological father is Japanese but refuses to give these children Japanese nationality.

Try to adopt these "stateless" children for a Japanese national is more difficult than going to another country to adopt.

So most are adopted by 100% foreign couples 99% of whom are from religious missions in Japan and will take these children back to the USA.

So I guess only needed are pure Japanese.

I am speaking from experience, we tried adopting and instead the"stateless" child was given to a all foreign missionary couple that had 6 others just like the one we wanted.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

I guess elderly and those young single workers doesn't need any support, let them struggle.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Strange how there is always money to micturate away on pointless window-dressing like this, but never enough to spend the same amount on a permanent solution, such as investing in affordable daycare for working parents.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

So one government department is paying people to have kids in Tokyo while another is paying people to remove kids from Tokyo?

OK then.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

AntiquesavingToday  07:24 am JST

> If you cannot afford to have kids, best not to.

Leave me some money to maybe retire one day!

If you cannot afford to retire, best not to, dude.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Maybe all the distractions is the problem? Too much this, the internet. People can go back to their one room and go anywhere they like while surfing the web.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tell_me_bout_it

Today 10:01 am JST

AntiquesavingToday 07:24 am JST

> If you cannot afford to have kids, best not to.

> Leave me some money to maybe retire one day!

> If you cannot afford to retire, best not to, dude

Sorry "dude" but I am not asking you or the government or others tax money to pay for my retirement.

I earned my money why should I pay more taxes and have less to retire because you or someone else wanted more kids and can't afford it.

You want kids then pay for them on your own. That is what I did.

You have a very strange idea of whose money it is and who worked for it.

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Some here are funny, I worked for my money and I shouldn't have to pay for others,

I should be able to keep MY money for MY retirement, why do you deserve to get it because you cannot afford the kids you chose to have.

Seems some here think they are entitled to other people's money!

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Great, that will pay for a souffle pancake brunch for two.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Wages have been unchanged for 30 years. Rent prices have increased significantly. 5,000 yen will barely cover for these increased costs, it won't encourage anyone to have a child. Hopefully this isn't the only solution.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Waste of money. My wife suggested raising the pay of child-care providers.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Covers the cost of the diapers.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If the cost of living is going up, which it is, then yes, welfare benefits should go up with it.

I don't see why people are kicking back against this. The alternative is child benefit not going up.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Whatta finish. So exciting. The gov takin the lead in the Krooked race.

Got this story pipin hot off the grill straight to front page news too! Forget testing symptoms or takin patients, or stadiums and maintenance or whats that electricity cash grab costin you. Here's a foodstamp a month for the kids, thank me later.. after all 5000 yens better than zero. Pennies from egypt!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

so our taxes are going to be used to subsidy Tokyo kids only as rest of Japan lives in woods and dont need any single extra penny...what a "joke".

0 ( +1 / -1 )

kohakuebisu

Today 10:50 am JST

If the cost of living is going up, which it is, then yes, welfare benefits should go up with it.

> I don't see why people are kicking back against this. The alternative is child benefit not going up.

Well lets see, where is the money going to come from? Oh right the rest of us!

So I get to keep working longer so someone else gets to have children and I pay for them!

Now lets apply that to other things.

I need a new car because I have health issues and I need it for work.

So how about you or the rest pay for it.

My mortgage is expensive, so what about some tax dollars for that?

I mean for me a roof over my head is more important than you or others needing more children.

I had mine, I paid for mine I am still paying as I took loans out to pay for their university, where is my free government money?

All those in favour of this or more, would you like to help pay off my children's education loans.

That way they can start a family and have children!

How about it?

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Fifty bucks a month per child.

Maybe 50 Aussie bucks.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The richest 5% have no income from a job, it’s all capital gains so they pay almost no tax at all.

First thing should be to put all income on equal footing, otherwise those who already have amassed millions continue to gain exponential benefits compared to the people working.

This post cuts right to the heart of the matter @WeiWei.

Working parents are paying higher tax rates as they work for falling salaries.

https://www.fool.com/taxes/2020/09/25/why-does-billionaire-warren-buffett-pay-a-lower-ta/

5000 yen is the equivalent of the coins tossed in the dirt to the starving peasants as the daimyo's procession marches by.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

LOL Still crankin out the same ol snake oil.

"Single moms!? Oh this is terrible!! What a problem Oh my ears are smoking… " looks like you fit right in with those other reruns and retreads still yelling at those fluffy clouds. Runnin outta lame brains to sell to hey?

NO one buying the stories about gold plated toilet havin single moms and their ivy league fake profile buyin poor kids just livin it up on champagne and private planes to honolulu tax free on the tax payers dimes. But go on

AntiquesavingToday

Back home we have one group that consistently produce more children than any other group.

Single mothers on welfare, more kids more money.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The Tokyo metropolitan government plans to provide families in the capital with a monthly allowance of around 5,000 yen per child aged through 18 regardless of household income levels, as part of efforts to address the rapidly falling birthrate in Japan.

Oh look, another pathetic government idea. Must be Tuesday already.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

As of the end of 2020, there were 211 stateless children in the country under 5 years old up from 54 in 2015.

The main reason children of foreign residents in Japan become stateless is parents are unaware of the necessary paperwork.

This is the first such survey to be conducted by Japan’s immigration agency amid an increase in children without nationality. The survey found 232, or 76.1%, of 305 children who were born between 2016 and 2020 and without nationality before turning 1 year old were stateless as a result of their parents not providing authorities with the required documentation.

Japanese law requires the adoptive parents and the child to spend at least six months together in Japan before the adoption can be finalized.

IV.CIVIL RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS

In other words, a child shall be a Japanese national when both parents are unknown or have no nationality in a case where the child is born in Japan (item numbered (3) of Article 2 of the Nationality Law).

So I get to keep working longer so someone else gets to have children and I pay for them!

We don't have children here but our taxes help those with children to educate them at schools and universities, child allowance, and other benefits.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Anonymous

Waste of money. My wife suggested raising the pay of child-care providers.

This! How many child-care providers in Tokyo? I would assume less than 1.93 mio. This would then mean a more than 5,000 JPY a month salary-raise, possibly even making the job worth doing. But again, is it up to Tokyo government to raise the private sector's salary...?

Anyway...

With official estimates set to show that annual births in the country fell below 800,000 for the first time last year, Tokyo Gov Yuriko Koike has said her government needs to make its own responses and that the government of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has lacked countermeasures that have an immediate effect.

We're definitely getting close to Tokyo gov election-time, aren't we? Tokyo going green last month. Loose change tossed at child-raising families. I would expect some news pretty much every month / quarter going forward.

The metropolitan government is considering securing the necessary funds for the planned allowance under its budget for fiscal 2023 starting in April. Around 1.93 million children aged 18 or younger lived in Tokyo as of January 2022.

...

> The Tokyo metropolitan government plans to provide families in the capital with a monthly allowance of around 5,000 yen per child aged through 18 regardless of household income levels, as part of efforts to address the rapidly falling birthrate in Japan.

So, 1,930,000 x 5,000 = 9,650,000,000 or 9.65 Bio a month

A lot of dough in total. Enough to mean something to your budget (macro-level), still not enough to actually mean anything to a household (micro-level). Of course, courtesy of your friendly neighborhood tax-payers.

Yet another non-meaningful policy amounting to not much more than "buying votes" by simply channelling back some of the overpaid taxes to some (but not all) of the tax-payers. Well, it has been working until now, hasn't it. I mean the vote-buying part, of course...

Your taxes at (non-)work.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

We don't have children here but our taxes help those with children to educate them at schools and universities, child allowance, and other benefits.

Great Wally, I have 2 with university loans to pay off!

You rich how about sending some their way to pay off those loans seeing how generous you are!

And obviously you not having children don't know how few places are available in public university.

So your taxes barely go to university since most in Japan end up in expensive private university.

4 year my son mid level university in business ¥1 million per year plus more.

6 year AI computer science Master degree in a good science university 4 year at ¥2 million plus expenses and 2 years at ¥ 1 million plus expenses.

Lets see how that ¥5,000 is going to help once the kids are over 18 and those university bills arrive.

For those that don't feel like doing the math.

2 kids university totaled over ¥ 14 million.

Now think is that ¥5,000 going to make you want more children?

1 ( +6 / -5 )

By all means Koikesan, please share the actual plan to remedy the situation. We are all ears. If I hear one more ‘gambarimasu’ type empty statement I think I’m gunna loose it!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

CKAI

Today 11:13 am JST

What I wrote is backed up by facts and studies, to the point even California is cutting off increase in welfare to women that have more children while on welfare.

Sorry if reality bothers you but the facts are facts even Norway has realised children of parents receiving benefits are more likely to also get on benefits because it is what they learned.

More you teach children to expect something for doing nothing the more they do just that.

If you are going to get a trophy just for showing up why try harder?

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Great Wally, I have 2 with university loans to pay off!

Firstly my profile is wallace, not wally so please don't use it.

Your adult working children should be the ones paying off their university loans. You claimed your daughter is running her own company.

Without government subsidies, university fees would be higher.

My point would be that the tax system is fair on what we pay but not on how the tax money is spent and in that regard will never be.

My taxes helped to educate your kids and pay your child allowance. So don't complain when others receive benefits from taxes you do not.

So your taxes barely go to university since most in Japan end up in expensive private university.

Guess you don't know?

All schools, public and private including the international ones and all universities public and private, all receive a level of public money without which the fees would be higher.

Personally, I am not interested in how much it costs for your kids to go to uni. That was yours and their decision.

Don't cry me a river.

Just stop complaining when someone receives a benefit you don't.

2 kids university totaled over ¥ 14 million.

Cheaper than in America and the UK.

I don't have children here but I do have three adult children and two grandchildren. All went to university.

About the ¥5,000, I already commented. Read it ACDC or OCD or ABC or whatever.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Some people always complain about what others get when they do not.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Well lets see, where is the money going to come from? Oh right the rest of us!

This is too simple, its not just a zero sum game.

This specific policy isn’t a good example since its not likely to have any effect on the birthrate, but I would push back heavily on your argument that any use of taxpayer money to increase the birthrate is little more than a deadweight loss for everyone else.

Japan’s demographic collapse is going to impose massive costs on you and your family (and mine too) if nothing is done about it. Japan’s economy is going to slide into oblivion if it doesn’t get future generations of productive working age people. The numbers are stark right now. Fewer young people means fewer new businesses, fewer workers, way less economic activity and fewer taxpayers. Yet the government has a huge debt that will have to be paid at some point, and if they can’t raise enough taxes on workers, businesses, etc because there aren’t enough of them then they’ll have to get it from property owning retirees with savings, either through higher taxes or inflation.

On the other hand, if the government spends money on programs that raise the birthright, they’ll be creating future businesses, workers, taxpayers which will mitigate the need to tax retirees, etc.

This of course depends on the policies being effective, which is doubtful when we are just talking 5000 Yen per month. But I want the government to be spending more f my tax money on things like this precisely because I don’t want them to be taking more from me when I hit retirement because there aren’t enough productive young people out there.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

These aged politicians think the falling birthrate is just due to money? There are very significant lifestyle changes among young people. They don't want to get married much less have babies. Their life is THEIR life, not part of something larger.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Kids finish school at 11:30 today (and many other days during the term). "Rooms" are full so how are working parents suppose to manage this? Just an idea but maybe this needs sorting out first?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

¥5000 per month?! That'll solve all the problems!

I agree it seems like a pittance, but that's a big basketful of groceries or a new pair of shoes for a couple of kids. For some families it will be quite a help.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

We have 3 son's and I payed a hefty sum for all of them to graduate from U.S. Colleges debt free. And that said, I don't begrudge the U.S. Govt. cancelling college debt one bit. I'm not rich, and even lesser so because of what we did, but I feel good that I sacrificed for them. Heck... what would I have done with the extra money, buy a bigger house, a sports car, RV... just things I really don't need. I'd rather see college students graduate debt free than to see Corporate America get massive tax cuts that the very next year increased the deficit by $1 Trillion. Then covid hit and they were still crying for more. Give it to them that need it.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I agree it seems like a pittance, but that's a big basketful of groceries or a new pair of shoes for a couple of kids. For some families it will be quite a help.

Thanks to inflation, its more like helping them buy what they used to buy for 5000 yen less, not helping them buy anything extra.

But the sentiment that this money helps and is better than nothing, I fully agree with that. We've had food price inflation, and that affects you the more mouths you have to feed. Our decision to have kids was taken nearly twenty years ago. There wasn't a sign in Costco saying these fish fillets that are 1200 yen in 2003 will be 2800 yen in 2023. We could just give our kids udon every day at 18 yen per portion, but that wouldn't be very healthy.

Other local governments are welcome to follow suit, so this does not need to be a Tokyo only thing.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Here in NZ, parents (of mid-lower incomes) get an allowance of about 30,000 yen per month per child on average. I'm sure Japan can do better.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

So this is 111.58 billion yen a year by my understanding.

Why not just give all Tokyo residents a tax cut, if such money actually is available?

I am not in need of this money, although of course I will take whatever the stupid government people offer.

I don’t think “other people’s money” is the solution to the problem here (once again)

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Here in NZ, parents (of mid-lower incomes) get an allowance of about 30,000 yen per month per child on average.

Do note you are talking about lower income people. The Tokyo proposal includes giving “other people’s money” to people like me who don’t need it.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The richest 5% have no income from a job, it’s all capital gains so they pay almost no tax at all.

Wow you think there are 6,250,000 such people in Japan? That’s like half the population of the narrow Tokyo metro area.

Taxing the richest 5% unfairly would be a seriously bad idea for the economy.

And taxing the richest 0.5% wouldn’t produce much revenues.

Taxes should have a broad based, be low rate, and most importantly, not spent frivolously, but rather with utmost attention paid to value for money.

The best thing for Japan is not higher redistribution than its already high situation, but pro-growth policies that lift everyone relative to where they would otherwise be.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

First thing should be to put all income on equal footing, otherwise those who already have amassed millions continue to gain exponential benefits compared to the people working.

Workers can earn capital gains too.

I know. I do.

And from next year, capital gains are going to be virtually free for virtually everyone except the richest. (This unfunded tax cut for the masses seems like a crazy idea to me but it was announced at the end of December with the NISA changes)

0 ( +1 / -1 )

So from an early age, Kids learn that they can get handouts for doing absolutely nothing.

The Government could at least make the payment based upon School attendance, or having a monthly test covering topics discussed during that month, or some other reward based scheme.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

In fact, families with kids should be much more helped with :

reduced tax income

return from society when retiring with higher pension

reduced prices for transportation, accomodation and general services, with less to pay per head based on a percentage reduction.

And that shall apply until child leaves his study days since you can't have a full job and study to best level.

With hindsight, one can tell that 5000 less on a milion is nothing compared to let's say 10% less.

Problem in Japan like in many countries is you pay per head but get only fixed allowances.

The more children you have the less you should pay per head. Common sense.

Having half price usually for children under 12 only (ex : transportation) is not corresponding to the effort from parents the more children they have, at all.

The more children get educated thanks to opportunities (moving, visiting, studying,etc), the better.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The best thing for Japan is not higher redistribution than its already high situation, but pro-growth policies that lift everyone relative to where they would otherwise be.

This is the rub though. Economic growth is tied to two factors: increasing productivity and increasing population. So long as Japan’s population continues to decline, its economy is going to shrink rather than grow. The older the population gets, the less productive it becomes (more retirees, aging workforce that becomes less dynamic, less able to learn or come up with new skills, etc) and the smaller it becomes (losing more than half a million a year now). Its a double whammy.

So any “pro-growth policies” in Japan by definition have to be tailored to address its demographic death spiral. Everything else is just window dressing. Talk about reducing taxes for the sake of cutting taxes just isn’t going to cut it.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Taxing the richest 5% unfairly would be a seriously bad idea for the economy.

And taxing the richest 0.5% wouldn’t produce much revenues.

Taxes should have a broad based, be low rate, and most importantly, not spent frivolously, but rather with utmost attention paid to value for money.

No, the wealthiest benefit disproportionately from tax revenues with policing, military , infrastructure and other tax based spending that mostly goes to protect their property and help with their business.

https://www.oecd-forum.org/posts/out-of-the-pandemic-reverse-the-plunder-of-the-commons

The plunder of the commons extends to the tax loopholes used to divert passive gains on capital.

So the effect on workers is trebled and the growth on investment income is exponential which is never returned to the economy in productivity gains but instead to gains and losses on the financial markets as we see every day.

This over financialization of the economy is why the working are poor and tossing 5000 yen to families becomes a political panacea and another waste of the public's tax base.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

So the government will pay you 1 million yen to leave Tokyo per child once or 5000 yen per child per month if you stay?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There are a lot of rich families in Tokyo and the govt. should save that money for poorer ones that make less than 6,000,000 yen ($60,000 US) a year. With the amount they would save, they should boost the amount to at least 10,000 per kid.

I live in the countryside and I get 10,000 yen a month for each of my kids. I appreciate it but it's still really not enough. But it does go a lot farther than it would in Tokyo where it's really expensive to live.

This govt seems really out of touch here.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

There are a lot of rich families in Tokyo and the govt. should save that money for poorer ones that make less than 6,000,000 yen ($60,000 US) a year. With the amount they would save, they should boost the amount to at least 10,000 per kid.

Usually when the government gives a hand out that seems it should be means-based but isn’t, like this, its because the administrative costs of verifying the income of recipients outweigh the savings to be realized from excluding high income people from it.

Not sure if that is the case here but it seems plausible, given the small amounts they are talking about.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Some here are funny, I worked for my money and I shouldn't have to pay for others,

I should be able to keep MY money for MY retirement, why do you deserve to get it because you cannot afford the kids you chose to have.

Seems some here think they are entitled to other people's money!

And get off my lawn before I report you to the police!

Like you are not a member of an interconnected society.

My My My My. I am sure that YOU never received ANY public benefits EVER, right?

The entire point of progressive taxation is that those at the top of the income strata (like the Mrs.) pay the highest percentage of taxes BECAUSE THEY CAN AFFORD TO to make sure that we have safe streets etc. and to support those at the bottom.

There is certainly a debate to be had about the appropriate level and useage of taxation, but the "ME ME ME ME" rant.... Give me a break.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Happy to get the money every month but not going to even think about having another child with this tiny amount.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

So long as Japan’s population continues to decline, its economy is going to shrink rather than grow.

This may be a chicken and egg question, of sorts.

The population decline is baked into the cake already, and will take decades to change.

Burning through 111 billion yen of tax payer money each year on willy nilly handouts is not going to help either issue.

I am with Speed in that at least these handouts should be targeted properly.

I already get handouts from the Tokyo ward that I live in, now Tokyo city is going to give me more too, it’s unnecessary. Didn’t they introduce those Your My Numbers so that they could target such welfare more appropriately?

This annual 111 billion could surely be spent better than giving it to people like me, most probably by just giving everyone a tax cut so that they can make their own decision about what to do with the money. Us all handing money to the government only to see the government waste it doesn’t help the two problems.

So any “pro-growth policies” in Japan by definition have to be tailored to address its demographic death spiral.

I suspect that pro-growth policies would in time help turn around the demographic issue. But no government action in the short to mid term is going to stop a million+ elderly Japanese dying each year. And the younger generation can only produce so many kids a year, biologically, no matter how much of everyone’s money we might throw at them.

Talk about reducing taxes for the sake of cutting taxes just isn’t going to cut it.

Taxes is indeed only one policy aspect, but one thing is for certain: no country every taxed itself into great prosperity.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The entire point of progressive taxation is that those at the top of the income strata (like the Mrs.) pay the highest percentage of taxes BECAUSE THEY CAN AFFORD TO to make sure that we have safe streets etc. and to support those at the bottom.

This is not actually accurate.

With a single rate of taxation on income, it follows that the higher income strata pay the highest % of taxes. If you earn 10 times as much as me, you would pay 10 times as much.

So the progressive taxation system has nothing to do with making higher income earners pay a higher share - they already do.

Same with consumption tax, which applies to big ticket items like on expensive new homes or new yachts and automobiles. The rich bear the higher share of the consumption tax burden because they consume more of those things, whereas a poor person who rents an apartment and takes the train doesn’t pay any of that consumption tax. And that’s fair because it’s in proportion to their consumption.

So the wealthy are already supporting those at the bottom and bearing the bulk of the burden of spending on all the things.

The progressive taxation system is unfair, and leads to disincentives to do more of those things that are taxed unfairly. This is a drag on economic growth, at the margin.

Everyone knows this to be true. Consider tobacco tax. Higher tax rate? Less smoking. It’s exactly the same economic force at work.

Yet, bizarrely here Koike wants to give even people who don’t need the money, the money… their own money. Huh? Lower the tax rates instead, and give the money only to the people who actually need it, and boost the economy in the process.

11 billion for the needy, the other 100 billion back in tax reductions - that would help the economy in Tokyo more broadly than favour only those of us with kids.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Jonathan Prin

Today 02:20 pm JST

In fact, families with kids should be much more helped with :

> reduced tax income

They do, they get a tax deduction for every child, a single parent get a tax deduction for every child plus an "orphan child" deduction even if the other parent is alive and well.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Jonathan Prin

Today 02:20 pm JST

In fact, families with kids should be much more helped with :

> reduced tax income

They do, they get a tax deduction for every child, a single parent get a tax deduction for every child plus an "orphan child" deduction even if the other parent is alive and well.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In my opinion, we need a comprehensive plan to address the birthrate and inequality in "one go":

Free universal preschool.

Free universal lunch for children pre-school through high-school.

Allow LGBTQ+ couples to marry and adopt children or pay for surrogacy; freeing up orphanage capacity and resources for children, while allowing more people to provide stable family environments for children with the protection of the law that's afforded to opposite sex couples.

Adjust academic calendar to sync with the rest of the world, helping Japanese children to compete on the global stage and take advantage of study abroad opportunities.

Reduce the consumption tax on groceries, diapers, and supplies for babies to ZERO.

Health insurance covers 100% of costs (no co-pay) for mothers from pregnancy to child-birth, and for children 0-20.

Amend the labor law to require businesses to allow (both) parents to take babies to most jobs where it is practical (offices) between the end of parental leave and the beginning age of pre-school. And allow extra breaks for these parents if necessary to feed babies, etc.

- Cut corporate welfare to pay for the above.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

With a single rate of taxation on income, it follows that the higher income strata pay the highest % of taxes. If you earn 10 times as much as me, you would pay 10 times as much.

So the progressive taxation system has nothing to do with making higher income earners pay a higher share - they already do.

One of the most hilarious pieces of disinfo I have seen on this site...You do know about percentages and math yes?

I am disappointed...

Someone paying 10 percent taxes on a million in earnings monthly would indeed be paying a higher total amount than someone paying 10 percent on a thousand in earnings monthly. But the burden is entirely different.

Progressive taxes like existed pre neo liberal policies kicked in at earnings in the multi-milliions at a rate of over 70 percent for only those earnings over that multi-million amount.

The working poor pay a higher percentage in tax now than billionaire investors...fact.

https://abcnews.go.com/blogs/business/2012/01/warren-buffett-and-his-secretary-talk-taxes

With official estimates set to show that annual births in the country fell below 800,000 for the first time last year, Tokyo Gov Yuriko Koike has said her government needs to make its own responses and that the government of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has lacked countermeasures that have an immediate effect.

Koike and Kishida are paying a lower tax rate on their capital asset heavy income than working parents...fact.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

The population decline is baked into the cake already, and will take decades to change.

Some population decline is already inevitable, but how much is an open question which in part depends on what the government does about it.

Burning through 111 billion yen of tax payer money each year on willy nilly handouts is not going to help either issue.

I agree, this by itself won’t turn things around.

This annual 111 billion could surely be spent better than giving it to people like me, most probably by just giving everyone a tax cut so that they can make their own decision about what to do with the money. Us all handing money to the government only to see the government waste it doesn’t help the two problems.

I disagree with this. While inadequate, at least the proposal does provide an incentive aimed at addressing the problem. Giving the money out to everyone in a tax cut doesn’t do that. A tax cut like that might be justifiable on other grounds, but its even less of a sound policy to address the birthrate than the 5k giveaway is.

. But no government action in the short to mid term is going to stop a million+ elderly Japanese dying each year. 

Yes, clearly.

And the younger generation can only produce so many kids a year, biologically, no matter how much of everyone’s money we might throw at them.

Biologically speaking there is nothing preventing younger generations from having 2 kids per couple, enough to eventually stabilize the population (after the baked in decline). Its a variety of social, economic and other things at work, not biology.

I don’t profess to know what the government should do, there are a ton of factors driving the low birth rate and yes, just throwing money at it isn’t in itself a solution. At th3 same time though if there were a free/cheap solution out there I’m sure it would have been tried already. So whatever the solution/mix of solutions are, they will likely require some government investment.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Before handing out a little ¥5,000 monthly or ¥1 million to move to the middle of nowhere and have to return because no schools or send your kids dozens of kilometers to school.

Why not fulfill the often promised them not, then proposed, then not, (since repeat). Free and guaranteed high school (aka senior high school).

You have 2 kids you need more than ¥5,000 monthly to pay for Juku so they can get into (Sr) high school, and remember not a good high school forget a good university.

You want children! Free education is the first step,

Not even elite university for my 2 cost over ¥ 14 million for 4 year business and a 6 years AI computer science Master.

That is over ¥14 million at the time just under $140,000 US.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Education should be free up to and including undergraduate courses.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

One of the most hilarious pieces of disinfo I have seen on this site...You do know about percentages and math yes?

I am disappointed...

None if that was really necessary.

Someone paying 10 percent taxes on a million in earnings monthly would indeed be paying a higher total amount than someone paying 10 percent on a thousand in earnings monthly.

Exactly.

But the burden is entirely different. 

You are talking about the burden from the perspective of a poor person; I was talking about the share of the tax burden being borne by the rich - and this is simple factual stuff.

I do not deny that a poor person pays I high portion of their income on consumption - approaching 10% indeed. But that has nothing to do with the fact that the rich already pay way, way more in tax.

And the reason they do, is partially so that we can give money to those poor people. But you are moaning about their tax burden, rather than looking at the transfer payments that they may receive as well.

That is the disinformation.

It only makes sense to look at both sides of the ledger - not ignore one completely.

If you want to make an argument for giving more tax money to the poor, and reducing other wasteful spending to pay for that, you won’t find any argument from me.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Education should be free up to and including undergraduate courses.

This is how government spending gets out of control.

Everyone demands other people’s money for spending on this and that.

The people who don’t get undergraduate courses would unfairly bear an extra burden in order to pay for that.

There is no Santa Claus to make stuff free.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

I do not deny that a poor person pays I high portion of their income on consumption - approaching 10% indeed. But that has nothing to do with the fact that the rich already pay way, way more in tax.

False again by multiple metrics. As has been stated stated above that labor income is taxed much more than passive investment income.

Add to that tax avoidance on capital gains.

https://offshoreleaks.icij.org/search?c=JPN&cat=2

This 5000 yen are the small change from the billions misappropriated from the taxpaying workers.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

There is no Santa Claus to make stuff free.

Except if you are a large capital asset holder and benefit from QE monetary easing central bank lending thanks to Nippon Ginko or the Fed,

Then Xmas is every day.

https://www.cnbc.com/2013/12/18/qe-the-greatest-subsidy-to-the-rich-ever.html

This is why families would welcome even a 5000 yen pittance from the fat cat corporatocracy.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Free education at the point of service creates a better-educated society with better-paid jobs and higher tax levels. It benefits all of society whether doing an undergraduate course or another training course. Adults begin their working lives without large student debts.

In the UK I was paid to attend uni.

If people only got what they could pay for there would be massive problems. Whether private health insurance or a universal one, people pay in but not everyone needs to use it. If everyone used it the cost of health insurance payments would have to be increased.

Universal healthcare and education.

Nordic nations Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden all offer opportunities to study free or at low cost: In Norway, university study is available free of charge to all students, regardless of study level or nationality.

22 Countries That Offer Free College. Countries around the world offer tuition-free and low-tuition colleges. While many U.S. colleges cost tens of thousands in yearly tuition and fees, attending college in these 22 countries costs much less.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Access to education is a right.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Education should be compulsory until the age of 21.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Wallace! What is the price of a dozen diapers in Japan?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Stephen Chin

Wallace! What is the price of a dozen diapers in Japan?

How many diapers does a child need?

On average, a baby can go through between 2,000 and 2,200 diapers in their first year.

Y40 each.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

5000 yen! Hahahahhahahhhahhahhhhh

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

In a weird way, most if not all of the 5k will flow back into the economy pretty fast so it was likely ez to get it approved.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The falling birth rate is a very good thing, in an already grossly over -populated country.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

labor income is taxed much more than passive investment income.

Around in circles. Already dismissed this nonsense in a prior comment yesterday, regarding workers investing their money too, and the massive “unfunded tax cut” that is the NISA expansion in 2024.

I would not complain if both labour income and investment income were taxed fairly at 10%.

But singling out certain people to pay a higher proportion of what they earn than others, is an unfair approach.

Free education

It’s not free. Nothing is, except rain water. To decide how we ration stuff we need to have prices on things.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Free education and health at the point of service.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Every little bit of assistance counts and especially if its steady .

Don't look a gift horse in the mouth .

No matter how pitiful it may seem !

It's a step in the correct direction and as we know Japan shuffles slowly.

If you don't appreciate the assistance then i suggest you refuse it and let those that need it benefit !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

5,000 Yen per baby?

Per Day? The Japanese Government is wealthy.

Per Week ? The Japanese Government is not so wealthy.

Per Month ? The Japanese Government is not wealthy.

Per Year ? The Japanese Government is miserly.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

That'll go... what... 1/10000th of what they owe when born due to misspending? 1/1000000000 of what they will owe after the new defense spending? 1/10th of the day off a person has to take to wait in line for an interview to try and get into a nursery school?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Extravagant funerals and parsimonous handouts will not make more babies.

Meanwhile, as the LDP shakes in their boots childless couples and couples with single children are rejoicing. There is less competition for good universities and good jobs. Remember the 90s when this was the reverse? That was when a large percentage of young workers were denied full time jobs. We are talking about a forgotten generation.

The forgotten generation of young brushed aside workers could not afford to have children or perhaps even marry.

Today workers have learned that no children means more money and less hassles. Five thousand yen a month until you are 18 is not going make it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites