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InvestmentsIn major shift, Japan looking to accept more foreigners indefinitely By Reuters

In major shift, Japan looking to accept more foreigners indefinitely By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Workers from Thailand work at Green Leaf farm, in Showa Village, Gunma Prefecture, Japan, June 6, 2018. Picture taken June 6, 2018. REUTERS/Malcolm Foster/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) – In a major shift for a rustic lengthy closed to immigrants, Japan is looking to enable foreigners in sure blue-collar jobs to keep indefinitely beginning as early because the 2022 fiscal 12 months, a justice ministry official mentioned on Thursday.

Under a regulation that took impact in 2019, a class of “specified skilled workers” in 14 sectors resembling farming, building and sanitation have been allowed to keep for up to 5 years, however with out their relations.

The authorities had been looking to ease these restrictions, which had been cited by firms as amongst causes that they have been hesitant to rent such assist.

If the revision takes impact, such staff – many from Vietnam and China – can be allowed to renew their visas indefinitely and convey their households with them, as the opposite class of more expert foreigners are allowed to do now.

Immigration has lengthy been taboo in Japan as many prize ethnic homogeneity, however strain has mounted to open up its borders due to an acute labour scarcity given its dwindling and ageing inhabitants.

“As the shrinking population becomes a more serious problem and if Japan wants to be seen as a good option for overseas workers, it needs to communicate that it has the proper structure in place to welcome them,” Toshihiro Menju, managing director of assume tank Japan Center for International Exchange, informed Reuters.

The 2019 regulation was meant to entice some 345,000 “specified skilled workers” over 5 years, however the consumption has hovered at round 3,000 per thirty days earlier than the COVID-19 pandemic sealed the borders, in accordance to authorities knowledge.

As of late 2020, Japan housed 1.72 million international staff, out of a complete inhabitants of 125.8 million and simply 2.5% of its working inhabitants.

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