# 3. Demographic structure: age

## Old people outnumber young people in 41 administrative entities.

- In Japan there are 18,472,499 young people (aged less than 15). They comprise 14.6% of the population. The population of persons of productive age (aged 15 through 64) is 86,219,631, or 67.9% of the total, while old people (aged 65 or older), numbering 22,005,152, account for the other 17.3%.

- Since the 1995 census, the number of old people has increased by 3,744,330 or 20.5%. This means that this category has increased by 2.8 points its share of the total and indicates the further advance of the aging of Japanese society.

Further analysis reveals that 11.7%, or 14,899,213 people are aged 70 or older, 8,998,637 (7.1% of the total) of whom are aged 75 or older. Compared with the 1995 results, the number of people aged over 70 grown by 3,034,469 (25.6% increase) and aged over 75 by 1,829,060 (25.5%).

- The number of young people has decreased by 1,541,231 since 1995, a 7.7% reduction. People aged under 15 account for 14.6% of the total population. This is the lowest figure since the census was started.

- Since 1995, the population of persons of productive age has decreased 945,090, or 1.1%. This is the first decline in this category since the census was started. The figures also represent a 1.5-point shrinkage of the proportion of persons of productive age in the total population.

- With two bulges at ages 51 to 53 and 26 to 29 that indicate the first and second postwar baby booms, in the year 2000, the population pyramid more closely resembles a gourd.

- Locally, the proportion of old people is greatest (24.8%) in Shimane Prefecture and lowest (12.8%) in Saitama Prefecture. Since 1995, the proportion of old people has increased in each administrative entity. The demographic phenomenon of aging has been progressing across the nation.

- In the population of every major administrative entity there is a lower proportion of young people than in 1995. As a result, old people now outnumber young people in 41 of Japan's 47 major administrative entities.

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