TOKYO, October 23, 2001 ( – Takahiko Furuta, director of the Research Institute for Contemporary Society, argues that due to the falling birthrate Japan is in need of 8.37 million immigrants. He says the population will peak at 127 million around the year 2005 and then is likely to fall to 92.3 million by 2050 and to 51 million by 2100.

Using a population of 92.3 million as a base, Furuta considers that a 0.1% rise in the annual birthrate would bring the population to 96.3 million. In order to maintain this level, Furuta argues, it is necessary to accept 8.37 million immigrants: 3.35 million workers and their families, which translates to about 180,000 immigrants per year. The goals of such a policy would be to replenish the labor force, the population, and purchasing power, while further developing the nation’s culture.

See the Japan Today report at: