Japan To Give Families Thousands Of Dollars Per Kid To Move Out Of Tokyo

Japan is reportedly offering families even more money than it had in the past to move out of Tokyo over population concerns.

The government of the Asian country is saying it will give as much as 1 million yen, the equivalent of around $7,631, per child for a family if they leave Tokyo. Japan was already providing 300,000 yen — or around $2,289 — per kid for families who would move.

A press release published on December 29, per Kyodo News, stated that the initiative originally began in the fiscal year of 2019. In the fiscal year of 2021, 2,381 people left the city region and took advantage of the financial help.

The outlet also noted that the new amount will be put forward in the fiscal year beginning next April, according to a source.

Those eligible for the money include residents of Tokyo’s 23 wards and people who commute to that area from nearby regions. If people take part in the program and get the money for moving, they have to live in one of the participating regions for a minimum of five years and have a job. If they leave before the necessary duration is up, it will be requested of them to give the money back. The money also only applies for a child who is under the age of eighteen, or who is eighteen years old but in his or her last year of high school.

The program also could encourage people to build businesses and be entrepreneurial in their new areas. Couples who have two kids less than eighteen years of age and decide to leave and begin a business in the new region they live in will get up to five million yen, or $38,157.

People who want to take part in the program have to approach the local government in the area they move to after three months to one year after they move and say they plan to stay for a minimum of five years, according to Nikkei Asia.

The initiative is part of an overall effort by authorities to help areas that are struggling with populations that are getting older and smaller. Officials are also eager to thin out the packed areas of Tokyo.

In 2020, Japan’s fertility rate was 1.3 births per woman. The fertility rate needed to replace the current generation, with no migration, is around 2.1 children per woman in the majority of countries. The move could be a way to encourage people to have more children, as well as move to less populated areas.

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