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Ageing in Japan

28 minutes
First broadcast:
Saturday 02 March 2013

Japan is the fastest ageing country in the world and now the baby boomer generation are reaching retirement. This is putting a huge strain on Japan’s finances, which are already burdened by an enormous public debt of more than twice GDP. Japan is also shrinking, because of a slowing birth-rate, so there aren’t the young workers to pay for their elders’ retirement.

Peter Day travels to Japan to find out how the country is dealing with this conundrum. On the island of Shikoku, in a village where almost half the population are over 65, he meets a 90-year old lady who is but one of many elderly people still working. Is this what the future holds for us all?

  • Contributors to this programme

    Atsushi Seiki
    President, Keio University, Tokyo

    Noriko Hama
    Professor of Economics, School of Management, Doshisha University, Kyoto

    Kuniko Inoguchi

    Tomoji Yokoishi
    Founder, Irodori

    Florian Coulmas
    Director, German Institute for Japanese Studies

    William Saito
    Entrepreneur and investor



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