Quarter of Okinawan men never marry

It seems that marriage is losing its luster among Japanese despite of the best efforts by the government worried about the declining birthrate and shrinking population.

According a the survey of Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the “proportion of never married” indicating the percentage of people who never married before the age 50 was 23.37% for men, and 14.06% for women in 2015.

Results for Okinawa were even direr, as 26.2% of men under 50 in the prefecture have never married. The rate is the national highest. The rate for Okinawan women is 16.36% that places them in the 5th place in the nation.

Both figures are 3 percent higher than 10 years ago, and the highest ever. The numbers show that one in four men and almost one in seven women never marries.

In 1970, only 1.7% of men and 3.33% of women in Japan remained single, but the rates have increased ever since.

The lifetime non-marriage rates are published every five years based on census.

As for reasons, increased and diversified choices in people’s lives is one, but there are many people who hesitate to marry because of financial reasons, as the rate of part time workers has increased to 40% of the work force.

Okinawa has the highest “never married” rate for men, followed by Iwate, Tokyo, Niigata, and Akita. For women, Tokyo had the highest rate, before Hokkaido, Osaka, Kouchi, and Okinawa.

According to another survey by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, 86% of men and 89% of women between ages 18 to 34 think, “I want to get married some day”.