Japan spending millions to be cool?


Country of rising sun Is on a global campaign to promote the overall popularity of otaku. Japan’s upper house on June 12 approved a $500 million, 20-year fund to promote Japanese culture overseas.  This campaign, dubbed  “Cool Japan” is designed to flood everything from Japanese movies, anime, food to culture and tourism overseas.

It seems somewhat strange for a country to be promoting its culture this way. Japan might be trying to attract young people with this culture campaign. The truth is, Japan has a rapidly aging population. According to a study conducted by Japanese Statistics Bureau, by 2050 the number of Japan’s rapidly aging population will be about twice the number of able body workers.

Thanks to low birth rates, Japan is aging faster then that of other countries. This aging epidemic has become more critical with record high numbers of elderly citizens leaving the workforce and depending on social services for their livelihood. In other western countries facing similar circumstances, Immigration has help combat shrinking native workforce,but in Japanese case, the countries policies aren’t as inviting for foreign workers. The question remains, Is spending millions on “Cool Japan” really the right decision for a country with much more troubling problems to come?

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