This year, the Japanese government will increase financial assistance for child-rearing families moving from Tokyo’s metropolitan area to rural areas with declining birth rates and an ageing population.
According to an Asia Nikkei report, financial assistance will be increased from 300,000 yen ($2,314) to 1 million yen ($7,500) per child. The programme, which began in 2019, encourages families with children to relocate to areas with low, ageing populations.
People who have lived in one of Tokyo’s 23 wards for more than five years in the last decade are eligible for this assistance. Parents who commuted to these wards from other areas of Tokyo during the same time period are also eligible. In theory, each mover’s household will receive one million yen. The financial assistance increases by 300,000 yen for each child. This assistance is contingent on meeting one of three conditions: either remotely continuing with the same work they did prior to relocating, finding employment in a small or midsize company in the area they relocated to, or starting a new business there. Beginning in April, a couple with two children will be eligible for up to
Applicants have to report to the local government within three months to one year of moving and must live in the relocated area for at least five years. If they move before the end of that period, they’ll have to return the aid.
In the fiscal year 2021, 1,184 families availed themselves of this benefit, up from 290 in 2020 and 71 in 2019.