TOKYO -- Japan's population is expected to drop to 88.08 million in 2065, but the pace of decline will be moderate due to higher birthrates among women in their 30s and 40s, a government estimate showed Monday.
The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare also reported to the Social Security Council the long-term domestic population projections released by its affiliate, the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research. The institute updates the projections every five years based on census figures.
The recent increase in birthrates among woman in their 30s and 40s has prompted the institute to revise up its estimate on total fertility rate -- the average number of children a woman is expected to bear during her lifetime -- five decades later from 1.35 in the previous estimate in 2012 to 1.44 This would add 6.72 million more people to Japan's population than the previous estimate and delay when the population falls below 100 million by five years.
However, the trend of an aging population coupled with low birthrates will remain unchanged; one elderly person aged 65 years or older will still be supported by 1.2 working-age people five decades later -- the same as shown in the previous estimate.
The total population in 2015 was 127.09 million people, with the number slipping to 99.24 million in 2053.
The percentage of working people between 15 and 64 will fall from the current 60.8%, or 77.28 million, to 51.4%, or 45.29 million, five decades later.
The percentage of elderly will rise from 26.6%, or 33.87 million, to 38.4%, or 33.81 million.