TOKYO, JAPAN – A group of Tokyo-based public think tanks warned on Thursday, February 3, that Japan will require almost four times more foreign workers by 2040 to achieve the development path set in the government’s economic estimate.
The findings show Japan’s rising reliance on migrant labor to compensate for a decreasing population, while its ability to lure abroad talent has been hampered by tight COVID-19 border controls that have barred students and employees from entering the country.
According to the GMA News report, in an interview on Super Radyo dzBB with Marie Rose Escalada, Labor Attaché in Tokyo, she said Japan needed foreign workers amid labor shortages. Citing the Japanese government, Escalada said the country needed at least 345,150 workers.
Some workers in need of these industries are:
- Care workers
- Food service
- Construction industry
- Building cleaning management
- Manufacture and food beverages
- Accommodation industry
- Machine parts and tooling industries
- Ship building and ship machinery
- Fishery and aquaculture
- Automobile repair and maintenance
- Industrial machinery
- Electronics and information technology
“Ang total shortage nito according to Japan government is 345,150. As of September 2021, nasa 38,337 pa yung nakakuha ng visa nito mga around 11% so malaki pa yung opening. So if you really want to come in Japan, number one, pass the skills test and number two, please learn the language (The total shortage, according to the Japanese government, is 345,150. As of September 2021, only 38,337 had secured their visas, or around 11%, so there are still more openings. So if you really want to come to Japan, number one, pass the skills test, and number two, learn the language,)” Escalada said.
According to Escalada, Japan has good labor standards that provide “equal treatment” for all employees. “Whether you are a Japanese or a foreign worker, everybody is treated equally,” she added.
Meanwhile, Vietnam and China make up roughly half of all foreign workers in Japan. The think tanks predicted that the number of immigrants from low-income nations such as Cambodia and Myanmar will skyrocket over the following two decades.
However, the group claimed that under the current immigration system, the supply of migrant workers will always fall short of demand, and that Japan should explore more long-term visas.
Because of the coronavirus, Japan’s borders have been closed to non-Japanese citizens, raising concerns that the country’s reputation as an attractive destination for international talent may suffer.