Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Well, well, well. What have we here?

UPDATE: Article in English added.

Seems the political winds might soon start blowing in favour of immigration.

In a speech given at the recent APEC meeting Hatoyama talked about Japan's low fertility and aging population; saying that Japan needs to work toward becoming a more desirable place for people from overseas to visit, live, and work.

Apparently he even used the word "immigrants". That being said, he seemed to shy away from calling his stance the basis of immigration policy, reflecting his position of giving primacy to child allowances and broader access to education in order to improve fertility rates.

LINK (if you read Japanese) LINK (In English)

I think this may be encouraging in two respects. Firstly if my understanding is correct, according to the article Hatoyama acknowledged that family oriented policies are not the only answer to demographic trends.

Secondly, The ability of child allowances required to raise the fertility rate in any significant way have been called into question by a number of studies (see page 13 of THIS paper. The whole thing is worth a read, though). The Hatoyama administration are going to have to seek other approaches. This presents a possible entry point for the organisation.

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