Emerging Asia Should Learn From Japan’s Demographic Experience (Nikkei Asian Review)

Countries in Asia which have industrialized are often described as “flying geese,” taking off around the region like the birds — in waves. It started in Japan, with its average growth of 10% between the mid-1950s and early 1970s, before spreading to the Four Dragons — Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. The South East Asian countries followed, then China — last and certainly not least.

Such economic success, however, has carried with it intractable demographic challenges — a low birthrate and rapid aging. The cost of raising children grew, medical services improved and social security provided a safety net, leading people to want fewer offspring. Again, Japan has led the way — and there are lessons here for the rest of the geese. READ MORE

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