Fact Sheet & Country Note on Japan
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Fact Sheet & Country Note on Japan

I. General

Official Name

Japan (Nihon or Nippon in Japanese which means ‘Origin of Sun’).




Standard Time

GMT + 9 hours


Land Territory

3,77,915 sq. kms. (61st largest in area)



Long and irregular coast line of about 33,889 km.



Japan known as the ‘Land of Rising Sun’ is a part of a long chain of mountains running from South East Asia to Alaska. It comprises of over six thousand islands. It has long rocky coastline with many small and excellent harbours, numerous valleys, rivers and lakes.  Mountainous and hilly areas account for over 75% of total area with 532 mountains over 2,000 meters high. Mt. Fuji is the highest mountain rising up to 3776 meters. Being located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, Japan is prone to tremors and earthquakes. 


Predominantly temperate, it is marked by four distinct seasons with pronounced differences in the North and South. Northern Japan has long and harsh winter and relatively cool summers. Central Japan has cold short winter and cool humid summer.

Main Islands

Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu which account for over 90% of total area. 

Major regions

Traditionally, there are 8 regions: Hokkaido, Tohoku, Kanto, Chubu, Kansai, Chugoku, Shikoku, and the Kyushu and Ryukyu Islands.

Main Cities



City                       Population (in millions)


Tokyo (capital)                 9.1

Yokohama                        3.7

Osaka                               2.7

Nagoya                             2.3

Sapporo                            1.9

Kobe                                 1.6

Kyoto                                1.4

Total Prefectures

(Administrative division)




Major Prefectures with population (2015)


Name of Prefecture       Population (in millions)

Tokyo                               13.4

Kanagawa                          9.1

Osaka                                 8.8

Aichi                                   7.5

Saitama                              7.2


Greater Tokyo Area constitutes 28.3% of the total population; making it the world’s most populous metropolitan area.

Population and key demographic factors


Population: 125.362 million  

Male population: 48.66 % 

Female population: 51.33%


Birth rate: 8.0

Death rate :10.4

Population growth rate: -2.3


Aging population:


Ø  Nearly 26% of the population is over 65 years of age


Ø  13% of the population is aged 75 & above.


Ø  Japan’s population is projected to drop to around 86.7 million in 2060 with people aged 65 & above making up nearly 40% of the total.



Population Density

336 Persons per sq. kms. – 34th in the world  

Fertility rate

2012 – 1.41

2013 – 1.43

2014 -  1.42

2015- from 1.43 to 1.45 (provisional)

(Note: the fertility rate is well below the 2.07 mark needed to keep the population from declining)

Population Growth

Population decreased by 270,000(0.21%) from a year earlier as in 2015.

Life Expectancy at Birth (years)

Male – 80.50 and  Female – 86.83 years    


Shintoism (51%), Buddhists (43%), Christians (1%), Others (5%)


Neighbouring Countries

Russia, North Korea, South Korea, China, Philippines, Pacific Islands, and the US.


Political System

Japan is a constitutional monarchy. The Emperor is the symbol of the State and of the unity of people. He performs his constitutional duties on the advice and with the approval of the cabinet. Japan follows parliamentary democracy with separation of legislative, executive and judicial branches.  The term of the government is four years. It may be terminated earlier if the Cabinet dissolves the House of Representatives. The Cabinet headed by Prime Minister is responsible to the Parliament (Diet) consisting of the House of Representatives (Lower House – 475 seats) and the House of Councillors (Upper House – 242 seats).  Voting is by universal adult (18 years old and above) suffrage. 


Major Political Parties

House of Representatives - 475 seats [(as of July 26, 2016)


Liberal Democratic Party

289 (24)

The Democratic Party and Club of Independents

96 (9)


35 (3)

Japanese Communist Party

21 (6)

Initiatives from Osaka

15 (0)

The People's Life Party & Taro Yamamoto and Friends

2 (0)

Social Democratic Party

2 (0)


13 (2)

Vacant Seats


Total Seats

475 (44)


Note: Figures in parentheses show the number of women members                                                         



House of Councillors - 242 seats  [(as of September 19, 2016)


Liberal Democratic Party


The Democratic Party and The Shin-Ryokufukai




Japanese Communist Party


 Osaka Restoration Association


Hope Coalition(Kibou)


Independents Club


The Party for Japanese Kokoro


Okinawa Whirlwind




Vacant Seats


Total Members



Note: Figures in parentheses show the number of women members                                                        

[Elections for the 121 Seats(half of the Upper House seats) was held on 10 July 2016]                           



His Majesty Emperor Akihito


Government leaders

Prime Minister                                          Mr. Shinzo Abe

Deputy Prime Minister, Finance Minister    Mr.Taro Aso

 & State Minister for Financial Services                                  

Foreign Minister                                          Mr.Fumio Kishida

Economy, Trade & Industry Minister          Mr. Hiroshige Seko *

Defence Minister                                        Ms.Tomomi Inada*

Land, Infrastructure & Transport Minister  Mr. Keiichi Ishii

Chief Cabinet Secretary                             Mr. Yoshihide Suga

* Appointed in the Abe Cabinet reshuffle on 03 Aug 2016

Opposition Party

Democratic Party (DP) is the main Opposition Party.  Democratic Party of Japan(DPJ) was in power from 2009-2012. [DPJ and Japan Innovation Party(JIP) parties were merged in March 2016 and renamed the new party as "Minshinto" or the “Democratic Party]

President: Ms. Renho

(Elected Party President on 15 Sept 2016)

II. Key Economic Indicators


The economy of Japan is the third largest in the world by nominal GDP, the fourth largest by purchasing power parity and is the world’s second largest developed economy.  Japan is the world’s third largest automobile manufacturing country, has the largest electronics goods industry, and is often ranked among the world’s most innovative countries leading several measures of global patent filings. Facing increasing competition from China and South Korea, manufacturing in Japan today now focuses primarily on high-tech and precision goods, such as optical instruments, hybrid vehicles, and robotics. Besides the Kant? region, the Kansai region is one of the leading industrial clusters and manufacturing centres for the Japanese economy. Japan is the world’s largest creditor nation, generally running an annual trade surplus and having a considerable net international investment surplus. 

GDP Per Capita FY 2015

US $ 36,230


GDP Growth Rate in 2015

2.5% (Nominal); 0.5% (Real)

GDP (Nominal)

500.535 trillion Yen ($ 4.16 trillion) (FY2015-16)

GDP (Real)

529.179 trillion Yen ($ 4.40 trillion)  (FY2015-16)


Inflation rate

0.4% in 2013

2.7% in 2014*

0.8% in 2015

(Source: Statistics Bureau, Ministry of internal Affairs and Communications, Govt. of Japan, * In April, 2014, consumption tax was increased from 5% to 8%.)

Unemployment rate

3.7%  (FY 2015-16)

3.4% (CY 2015)

Foreign Exchange Reserves

$ 1.262 trillion (March  2016)


$ 774.92 billion (FY2012)

$ 709.13 billion (FY2013)

$ 684.85 billion (FY2014)

$ 616.08 billion (FY2015)


$ 873.67 billion (FY2012)

$ 846.20 billion (FY2013)

$ 770.54 billion (FY2014)

$ 624.40 billion (FY2015)

Total trade

$ 1648.59 billion (FY2012)

$ 1555.33 billion (FY2013) 

$ 1455.39 billion (FY2014)

$ 1240.48 billion (FY2015)

Trade Deficit

$  -98.75 billion (FY2012)

$ -137.07 billion (FY2013)

$  -85.69 billion (FY2014)

$    -8.32 billion (FY2015)

Total Public Debt

$ 8.82 trillion  205% of GDP (FY2016 government provisional)

(converted on the rate of exchange rate at $1=JPY120.37)

Rate of Exchange

$ 1= ¥ 100.28  (as on 16 August, 2016)


Major Export Destinations

(FY 2015)

USA (20.4 %), China (17.5%), South Korea (6.9%), Taiwan (5.9%), Hong Kong (5.5%), Thailand (4.4%), Singapore (3.1%), Germany (2.6%), Australia (2.1%), Vietnam (2.0%)

Major Import Sources

(FY 2015)

China (25.4%), USA (10.5%), Australia (5.1%), South Korea (4.1%), Taiwan (3.7%), Saudi Arabia (3.7%), UAE (3.4%), Germany (3.2%), Thailand (3.2%), Malaysia (3.1%)

Major Items of Exports

Motor vehicles, semiconductors, iron & steel products, parts of motor vehicles, plastic materials, power generating machinery, organic chemicals, scientific & optical instruments, ship and electrical apparatus. 

Major Items of Imports

LNG, clothing & accessories, petroleum products,  semiconductors, computer units & parts, coal, non-ferrous metals, audio and visual apparatus, medical products

Japan’s Major Industries

Motor Vehicles, Electronic Goods, Machinery & Machine Tools, Steel & Non Ferrous Metals, Ships, Chemicals, Textiles, Processed Food


Indian Origin/Permanent Resident

Total: 547

Indian Expatriates


Total: 28,352

Indian Organizations







Government Organizations





September 2016



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