Naturalizing East Asians Can Solve Japan and Taiwan’s Population Problem

Targeting East Asians for naturalization could be a first step to wider acceptance of immigration.

The News Lens
Date: 2018/05/17
By: Xiaochen Su 

Photo Credit: Changlc. CC0

There is no escaping the fact that the populations of Japan and Taiwan are shrinking, and a more relaxed policy on immigration and naturalization could be the answer to the crisis.

An immigration policy that focuses on naturalizing East Asians, who account for the majority of the foreign populations in both countries, is an overlooked potential avenue for countering the population problem, and could provide a stepping stone to a wider embrace of multiculturalism that looks further afield for potential new citizens.

The population problem
A recent Japan Times article matter-of-factly reports that 2017 marked the seventh consecutive year of declining population in Japan, while the proportion of those over the age of 65 had hit an unprecedented 27.7 percent.

The same article, quoting government figures, paints grim prospects for Japan’s demographics. The current population of 126.7 million is forecast to fall to below 100 million by 2053, before plummeting to 88.1 million by 2065, by which time the number of over people over 65 is projected to account for 38.4 percent of the population

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