By: Kevin Thomas ~Staff Writer~
Japan, the country with the oldest population in the world, has a continually decreasing birth rate.
A recent study revealed that many people of prime childbearing ages are doing nothing to reverse those statistics.
According to The Japan Times, a survey of unmarried people between the ages of 18 and 34 revealed that 42 percent of men and 44.2 percent of women have never had sex.
It also revealed that 70 percent of unmarried men and 60 percent of unmarried women are not in relationships. The survey did not include any information on same-sex partners.
A country where young people aren’t having sex, or getting intimate in any way, may seem like a silly problem for the U.S., but this is a serious problem in Japan. The current administration is not happy with the survey’s results.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his administration have spoken several times about raising the birth rate and even provide subsidized child care in an effort to get more working people to have children, but it appears to be to no avail.
To maintain a country’s population, each woman would need to have 2.1 children, according to the CIA World FactBook. Abe’s administration has previously stated its desire to raise to nation’s fertility rate from 1.4 to 1.8 by 2025, though this goal has fallen short on the timeline so far.
The survey also asked participants about their hopes and dreams for love and romance in the future, and around 90 percent of the participants stated that they do desire to get married “sometime in the future.”
“They want to tie the knot eventually,” said Futoshi Ishii a head researcher for the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, the organization that complied the study. “But they tend to put it off, as they have gaps between their ideals and the reality. That’s why people marry later or stay single for life, contributing to the nation’s low birth rate.”
The study also discovered that the average number of children among couples married between 15 and 19 years was also at a new low of 1.94 children per couple.
On the positive side, the study showed that more than 50 percent of women returned to work after having their first child.
The problem of having people from the ages of 18 to 34 apathetic to romance and love is not something unique to the small Asian island. It has been a problem all over the developed world based on economic uncertainty in the lives of millennials who decide to put their careers before their sex lives and marital choices.