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Kishida pledges to boost child-rearing budget to 4% of GDP

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He could start by increasing child care facilities. In some areas it is damn near impossible to find a place

This really isnt his fault, nor any PM before him either. It's the local municipalities that have stopped funding them as with the declining birth rate it has made it hard for many facilities to stay open.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Too little, too late, and it won't counter the increases in living costs, taxes, and the lack of increase in wages. And we all know, too, that they'll offer it to would-be families in the form of coupons, or strap conditions on it, like they'll get an extra ¥100,000 one time if they have an extra child, or will award a massive amount of money to a nursery school chain operator who will give it all to the execs, who will of course be cronies of the government and then nothing will get built.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Create a new “Romance” minister. Bring in school proms, conversation classes and encourage individuality in the classroom (game), create a workforce that actually can and want to spend time at home with the family, ( all very doable with the emergence of AI, three day weekend? ) then there’s the mass aversion to risk, which is so engrained it seems to have seeped into the DNA of the culture. No risk , no return, and definitely no game!

It could be done, but it would mean getting the coordinated message so on point, across all levels of society, effectively delivered by master communicators that people trust and believe. Right now it’s in the hands of the bureaucracy class….Kishida for example who shown his apples by coming out punching against gay marriage. The PM of love!

I simply don’t see enough people on the ground that want nor care enough to invest in time , effort or solutions. There’s a form of defeatism that has set in. People want to pretend to try instead of going the whole ten yards. By all accounts we are witnessing a culture in decline, and the falling birthrate just one large piece of the puzzle. This problem of ‘sustainable mediocrity’ needs a look too. Ladies flock to high performers, so where are they all? How well do they celebrate highly productive members of the group here? Do the bosses even know who they are? Could go on and on.

Would absolutely love to see Japan turn around, but we all live and breathe what’s happening on the ground day in , day out. Many just don’t have enough skin in the game, nor do they care for any. Pun intended

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I think the problem is Japanese guys need to get their game on

1 Looks

2 Money

3 Game

I don't think game is the problem.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No offense - really - no offense intended - but I think it's a strange cultural issue - you can at a restaurant on a Friday evening - and at one table there will be 4 lovely ladies - and at the next table - there might be 4 guys - look'n sharp - wear'n suits - where I come from - we (the guys) would introduce ourselves, but the ladies table a round of drinks...who the wants to hang out with guys on a Friday anyhow unless it introduces you to some ladies?...

On the train - in the evening - some dude is farting around with his hair while looking at his reflection in the window...there's some lovely lady standing next to him - does he talk to her?...no - he's playing with his hair

Oddly - this is a country where you have the most beautiful single women - and certainly the most beautiful single women beyond child-bearing years -

I think the problem is Japanese guys need to get their game on

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Kishida pledges to boost child-rearing budget to 4% of GDP

That is certainly money spent better than pumping it into the military, construction pork, or misguided "green" virtue signalling projects. Seeing the number of young people here who opt for a toy poodle instead of a baby, I think it should be higher.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I must admit even if giving money will boost fertility rate, it is another world to reach closer to the replacement rate of 2.1

Giving full liberty to women to control births and that claiming a woman with no offspring is a good as a woman with offspring lead to that effect, with large family no longer a value, even scorned.

I have my opinion but it is no longer deemed acceptable.

I think there shall be an equilibrium with a critical approach to the extremes.

Nowadays life is made easier for singles but they need to know that it is thanks to other people that it makes it possible.

I am more like Elon Musk than LGBT indeed although both shall be respected if respectful.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

To many women and their families are left to raising the children when the father decides to a hike. Try and collect just what is for the children, even when the Court grants child support is a laughing joke. A man making 60 thousand dollars only has to pay 600 hundred for 2 children, and if he doesn't want to pay it is up to the mother to try and track down the job and or assets the privacy laws protect the guy and so the men get away with not paying many times and the children suffer, and mother's well-being takes a hit trying to provide for the children. Until the government protect women and children when the father takes a hike there will be no change.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

You've got it backwards.

The same thing happens everywhere in the developed world when women aren't forced to get married and have kids.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Aren't there literally millions of single women in Japan? It's not like there are millions of couples waiting to have kids at a green light.

How does this policy change the fact that these women haven't and can't find a decent man?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Politicians don't care about kids however they realized they will need new taxpayers and workers so they are now "farming", like many said, the quality of life is making the birthrate, govt should print money as needed for giving good jobs to everybody and good salaries then destroy money when receiving taxes to avoid inflation.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Then again, how much to you think a 2 or 3LDK mansion apt or house cost in the more desirable areas of Tokyo, Osaka, or Kobe?

If you’d prefer to focus on only the “more desirable areas of Tokyo, Osaka, or Kobe,” then we should do an apples-to-apples comparison by focusing on only the “more desirable areas of Silicon Valley,” where the average cost rises to around $1.7 million (226 million yen). In the more desirable areas of Tokyo, we could find a relatively nice place for 226 million yen.

If we want to compare the average home price in all of Silicon Valley -- i.e., $1.08 million, or 144 million yen -- I would wager that many Tokyoites could find a relatively comfortable abode around Tokyo for 144 million yen.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

America spends .3% of its GDP on child-rearing. Wow

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Start a family assistance like Aust, one child family gets about $900 every 2 weeks until they leave school. Then babies will be popping out everywhere.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Well, the conservatives may not be all wrong. In all countries, women's liberation in terms of career and education is the prime driver of depopulation. Going back may not be feasible but going forward, make no more progressive mistakes.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

He could start by increasing child care facilities. In some areas it is damn near impossible to find a place

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Asiaman7

Of course, the quality of life might be less for those unable to afford the $1.08 million (December 2022) median price of a single-family home in the San Francisco Bay area.

Which is why I specifically stated, "Other than the cost of housing..."

Then again, how much to you think a 2 or 3LDK mansion apt or house cost in the more desirable areas of Tokyo, Osaka, or Kobe?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yay! Probably more beer money coming to all of us family people!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Increasing the cost of living is not helping families. He needs to make life easier for families not more difficult. Both parents should be able to receive deductions in tax for having dependents, not only one. Don’t just help at the birth stage, education should be free with subsidies for the expensive uniforms they need to wear.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Most of the Japanese we've met in the US (Silicon Valley area) did not want to return to Japan. Other than the cost of housing, the quality of life was so much better compared to their lives in Japan.

Of course, the quality of life might be less for those unable to afford the $1.08 million (December 2022) median price of a single-family home in the San Francisco Bay area.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

One thing totally forgotten in all this BS is that the consumption tax was raised to 10% with the added 2% increase to be used for the very thing he is talking about here now.

So where are the Diet members questioning him about where THAT money has gone?

7 ( +8 / -1 )

tamanegi

Adding to Japan's demographic and birthrate issue is that a record number of Japanese now live abroad and in many cases have made their new country home for themeselves and their children.

Definitely. Most of the Japanese we've met in the US (Silicon Valley area) did not want to return to Japan. Other than the cost of housing, the quality of life was so much better compared to their lives in Japan.

This was the same whether they were there on temporary visa working for a J company, H1B visa for a US company, or PR/Spouse visa.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

They should increase the salary instead. This to avoid making unnecessary overtime. I just notice this everytime at the office. They just only focused at work after 5pm to extend working hours. Because salary is too little not to mention not enough to make a family.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Where comes the money?

This is L.D.P. making false promise!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

When Kishida and the LDP realize that it's not just a financial issue but a persistently cultural and societal one, they may actually be able to start tackling the declining birth rate problem properly. Maybe start with the excessive amounts of overtime employees are still obligated and pressured to put in? Let them actually clock out at a reasonable hour so they can have a life, go home to their partner and family and spend some quality time with them?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Everyone moans about the cost of childcare, but that's buttons compared to what you pay for 16-22.

This right here speaks truth. Many of the financial troubles for families tend to occur around this time. Probably a good time to make high school education compulsory.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Definitely need to use some money to encourage yuppie migration away from cities and back to the heartland. Subsidies for home building, tax breaks for companies who allow remote work for the people who move there, etc.

Proximity to nature, open space, and friendly rural communities would likely get people to have children who might not have otherwise in some rabbit hutch in Tokyo.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Please I don't want any more money from the government. Money that will take 3x more from extra taxes the will introduce to support the cost.

Just provide real free education. You can start by providing the uniforms, school bags, ALL books or free and then continue with public school that is free and competitive to the private ones.

Then force by law to stop overworking people by providing them an actual wage that they can survive on the basic salary. So they dont have to pretend that they work for another 40 hours per week in order to receive a salary comparable to other advanced countries.

Just take these simple measurements and please DO NOT gives more cash money that would be just an invitation for new taxes.

That will convince people to have more kids not cash money. People need safety and stability not inflated money.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

An ever decreasing birthrate in an already grossly over -populated country is a good thing. In fact, over -population is the biggest problem facing humanity, other than global warming.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I strongly agree with other posters in that this has to be seen in the context of advanced Asian economies (lower birthrates than Japan) and rich countries as a whole (similar birthrates to Japan).

The government could do more, it takes a village to raise a child etc., but you could say that about everything.

The easiest way to increase the birthrate would be to increase immigration from countries with higher birthrates. Usually this means more socially conservative people. An obvious example is Latinos in the USA. This will only last one or two generations though, before such people adopt local ways and their birthrate will crash to local level. Since there is a labour shortage in Japan, inviting people from countries with high birthrates would kill two birds with one stone. Again this is a need for labour driving the situation. I am not suggesting for one second that most Japanese want immigration, since it is clearly not the case.

We have three kids, 17, 14, and 10. If my done-in-10-minutes Excel financial plan is correct, we are just about to hit the very expensive part of the process. Everyone moans about the cost of childcare, but that's buttons compared to what you pay for 16-22. In inaka, its common for kids to have to go into dorms, digs, or their own apartments just to go to senior high. If your kid is good at sport, sometimes the family will set up another household so the kid can attend a school with a good team. The mother will go with the kid and live in an apartment nearby. That is what you are expected to do (pay for).

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Kishida pledged Wednesday to boost Japan's budget for child-rearing to 4 percent of the country's gross domestic product to tackle the falling birthrate,

> > > > but he did not elaborate on how to secure the costs.....

So, just talk............

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Money doesn't buy kids. Improving the quality of life would be more helpful.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Adding to Japan's demographic and birthrate issue is that a record number of Japanese now live abroad and in many cases have made their new country home for themeselves and their children. In addition it's not always the case that one parent is non Japanese and they are just going to live in said person's country. In Australia and New Zealand it's not uncommon to meet and see more and more Japanese families who have migrated for good, started businesses, bought houses and are even having children in their new lands.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

garymalmgrenToday  07:49 am JST

This is not rocket science, just follow what the rest of the world is doing.

Ahh! But there lies the deeper problem.

A search will find that falling birthrates are a problem in almost all economically developed countries 

(Netherlands , Spain, Singapore, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Denmark, Korea, Russia )

https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/countries-with-the-lowest-birth-rates-in-the-world.html

All of these countries have tried a plethora of ideas to halt and reverse the declines ( university education is free in Germany and has been for a long time.)

Not one has been successful.

So, Japan is "following what the rest of the world is doing", depopulating.

It is just doing it faster (better?) than anyone expect Korea.

Indeed,but you forgot to omit the part that many European countries,especially Germany filled this problem with accepting mass immigration,and the second generation’s children of these expats became German and so in the end the population is stabilized.

But as we know Japan being a xenophobic insular society will prefer to go down rather than open it’s borders.

-11 ( +8 / -19 )

Child Rearing!!

Simple but yet converted to a very complex political game.

In many not so rich and are not a third world economy children/parents are offered Free health care, Free child care, Free books, Free transportation to schools, FREE ADUCATION up till they graduate from college, and I mean 100% FREE.

Education, Justice, and Democracy go hand in hand and it should a basic human right for every child.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

boost Japan's budget for child-rearing to 4 percent of the country's gross domestic product to tackle the falling birthrate

What a nonsense. The countries with the highest birthrates have a zero budget for child-rearing. First I would recommend some basic biology lessons. I won’t get into details here, but if you are ready with those elementary studies, we can discuss this here some further.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

No money, no family.

Japan's decline in national power and economic power is the root cause. Abenomics has failed, and Kishida can't have the guts to say it or change it.

The only solution for Japan is to import Chinese and Vietnamese permanent residents to bolster the population. This is something that I have already seen happening but the Japanese bureaucrats keep it an open secret from the xenophobic public.

-20 ( +5 / -25 )

Throwing more money at the problem seems to be Kishida's only move but I want to hear how this additional money will be spent. I also wonder what parts of the budget are getting cut now that additional 3% of the GDP is getting spent on "military" and "child rearing".

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Ahh! But there lies the deeper problem.

A search will find that falling birthrates are a problem in almost all economically developed countries

(Netherlands , Spain, Singapore, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Denmark, Korea, Russia )

Exactly! Everyone is having the same problem.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

They’re never gonna get it are they… smdh while this is helpful it does not address WHY people aren’t having kids. This is a much bigger issue with companies, work culture and low wages.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

With 6 kids still at home, loving it.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Michael, doubling something is 100% growth.

Kishida has lots of stuff on his shopping list. Perhaps he should think of a way to grow the economy 2+% in successive years (a feat which hasn't been done since 1995-96 according to World Bank data) to pay for it. https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.MKTP.KD.ZG?locations=JP

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Michael - the defense budget is increasing by that percentage, but the 4% for the child rearing budget isn't a proposed increase; the proposal is 4% of the entire nation's GDP.

He wants to double both military spending and child rearing spending. It reminds me of former PM Ikeda's "income doubling plan"; the average income doubled, but in the process inflation took away 60% of the value of that addition income. Japanese politicians sure do love "doubling" things, don't they?

6 ( +9 / -3 )

26.3% increase is Japan's defense budget in 2023 so a mere 4% for child rearing seems a bit under valued.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

It's only taken 33 yrs to think of a plan & it will come to nothing and result in nothing!

Taxes will go up though and funds will be siphoned off for bombs etc..

Oh the LDP out of touch and antiquated, feeding the ranks of Kishida & his cronies.

-5 ( +12 / -17 )

The answer, Mr. Kishida, is immigration. Just google it.

The increase in U.S. births since 1970 has been driven entirely by births to immigrant mothers. 

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/10/26/5-facts-about-immigrant-mothers-and-u-s-fertility-trends/

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Kishida got his arse handed to him in yesterday's diet session by the young representative from Fukushima, Baba, Yuki. Need more people like Baba who represent the voice of the young and can take the geezers to task.

13 ( +16 / -3 )

So where are the major tax breaks, the improved retirement pension, the free birth hospital rooms, the reduced prices for means of transport, the free cost for university, the return after birth at same position and same salary, the growing return for families with 3 kids or above ...and the more the better incentives.

I see none so far, with the same mere 10.000¥ per montht per child, never taking into account inflation by the way.

Talks or ideas are not actions.

12 ( +16 / -4 )

"...... how Kishida has been attempting to procure the budget for family support,"

That's an easy answer: increasing taxes again, reducing retirement pay again, last option print more money!

Besides, his promise is nothing but that - a promise, words, words, words and nothing but words.

Aren't we used to that already?

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

This is not rocket science, just follow what the rest of the world is doing.

Ahh! But there lies the deeper problem.

A search will find that falling birthrates are a problem in almost all economically developed countries

(Netherlands , Spain, Singapore, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Denmark, Korea, Russia )

https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/countries-with-the-lowest-birth-rates-in-the-world.html

All of these countries have tried a plethora of ideas to halt and reverse the declines ( university education is free in Germany and has been for a long time.)

Not one has been successful.

So, Japan is "following what the rest of the world is doing", depopulating.

It is just doing it faster (better?) than anyone expect Korea.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

But it remains uncertain how Kishida has been attempting to procure the budget for family support, fueling speculation that his government will carry out large-scale tax hikes to finance the costs.

Won't you....think of....the children.....

While the LDP will use the sales tax hike to to boost weapons manufacturers and middlemen purchasers of US weapons tech and prop up declining industries.

3 ( +15 / -12 )

PM Kishida apparently began emphasizing increased spending for family support (from some mysterious budget) only after he was criticized for his moves to extend the Tohoko reconstruction tax and then funnel half to military hardware. Perhaps this sudden spotlight on child-rearing is simply a deceptive ploy to keep the public looking one way while funds are gathered (or redirected) to fund projects that have much less public support.

13 ( +19 / -6 )

I hope it's just lip service. They already got the military 2% money so it would make sense to talk like he wants to do this. If he could get another 4% on the children's backs, the ones who must defend the ldp's twisted will, it seems like money that could easily be reappropriated if there was a fabricated need.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Japanese conservatives, who typically cherish traditional values, such as the role of women in giving birth and raising children, are opposed to separate surnames, arguing that the move might impact family unity.

They shouldn't be lawmakers if they don't listen to their constituencies. Not to mention that these idiots fail to accept the fact that something like 50% of marriages end up in divorce anyway, and it's got nothing to do with which "surname" is used! Hypocrites!

7 ( +17 / -10 )

Throwing money at the problem is not going to solve it. It’s a deeply societal issue that needs changing of social behaviours and expectations.

10 ( +22 / -12 )

The issue is not only the cost associated with child birth and child rearing and education, it is also the mindset where men typically do nothing, except taking 1 day off on the day of the birth and women are expected to stop working for at least a year (as it's hard to secure a daycare spot outside of the April start of school year) and then go back to work And take care of the kid(s) AND take care of household chores.

There should be more balance between men and women in terms of work and household/kids duties.

This is not rocket science, just follow what the rest of the world is doing.

And also some daycares/schools are asking too much from parents with meetings, preparation of activities , bentos etc...Some are better than others of course but it should be made easier everywhere.

20 ( +24 / -4 )

Japan has first birth decline in 1989, it takes Japan 33 years to finally only proposed necessary budget, policy and program needed to solve this problem?

https://www.prb.org/resources/japans-demographic-future/

-4 ( +20 / -24 )

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