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Embassy of India

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)                13.3
Yokohama                       3.7
Osaka                              2.7
Nagoya                            2.3
Sapporo                           1.9
Kobe                                1.5
Kyoto                               1.5

Total Prefectures
(Administrative division)


Major Prefectures with population (May 2014)

Name of Prefecture      Population (in millions)
Tokyo                              13.3
Kanagawa                         9.0
Osaka                                8.9
Aichi                                  7.4
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: 127.083 million  
Male population: 48.63 %
Female population: 51.37%

Birth rate: 8.2  
Death rate :10.1
Population growth rate: -2.1

Aging population:

  1. Nearly 26% of the population is over 65 years of age
  2. 12.5% of the population is aged 75 & above.
  3. 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

343 Persons per sq. kms. – 36th in the world  

Fertility rate

2012 – 1.41
2013 – 1.43
2014 -  1.42
(Note: the fertility rate is well below the 2.07 mark needed to keep the population from declining)

Population Growth

Population decreased by 215,000 (0.17%) from a year earlier as in 2014.

Life Expectancy at Birth (years)

Male – 80 and Female – 87 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 (20 years old and above) suffrage.

Major Political Parties

House of Representatives - 475 seats [20 August 2015]

Liberal Democratic Party


Democratic Party of Japan & Club of Independents  


Japan Restoration Party




Party for Future Generations


Japanese Communist Party


People's Life Party


Social Democratic Party






House of Councillors - 242 seats  

Liberal Democratic Party


The Democratic Party


New Komeito


Japan Innovation Party


Japanese Communist Party


Party for Future Generations


The Assemble to Energize Japan


Independents Club


Social Democratic Party


New Renaissance Party and Group of Independents


People's Life Party








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. Motoo Hayashi
Defence Minister                                       Mr.Gen Nakatani
Land, Infrastructure & Transport Minister  Mr. Keiichi Ishii
Chief Cabinet Secretary                            Mr. Yoshihide Suga

Opposition Party

Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) is the main Opposition Party which was in power from 2009-2012.
President: Mr. Katsuya Okada

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 Kantō 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.

(@ market price FY 2014)

529.43 trillion Yen ($ 5.30 trillion)

GDP Per Capita FY 2014

US $ 38,633

GDP Growth Rate in 2014

1.6% (Nominal); 0.1% (Actual)

GDP (Nominal)

487.882 trillion Yen ($ 4.06 trillion) (FY2014-15)

GDP (Real)

527.049 trillion Yen ($ 4.39 trillion) (FY2014-15)

Inflation rate

0.0% in 2012
0.4% in 2013
2.74%  in 2014
1.01 % (2015 provisional)

Unemployment rate

3.7% (FY 2014-15)

Foreign Exchange Reserves

$ 1.245 trillion (March 2015)


$ 801.28 billion (FY 2012)
$ 719.33 billion (FY 2013)
$ 621.26 billion (FY 2014)


$ 888.39 billion (FY 2012)
$ 839.15 billion (FY 2013)
$ 721.93 billion (FY 2014)

Total trade

$ 1689.67 billion (FY2012)
$ 1558.48 billion (FY 2013)
$  1343.19 billion (FY 2014)

Trade Deficit

$ -87.11 billion (FY 2012)
$-119.82 billion (FY 2013)
$ - 100.67 billion (FY 2014)
(all the above calculations are done at $1= JPY 119

Total Public Debt

$6.55 trillion -214% of GDP (FY 2014)
(all the above calculations are done at a reference rate of $1= JPY 119

Rate of Exchange

$ 1= ¥ 114 (as on 15 February 2016)  

Major Export Destinations
(FY 2014)

USA (18.7 %), China (18.3%), South Korea (7.5%), Taiwan (5.8%), Hong Kong (5.5%), Thailand (4.5%), Singapore (3.0%), Germany (2.8%), Australia (2.1%), Indonesia (2.1%)

Major Import Sources
(FY 2014)

China (22.3%), USA (8.8%), Australia (5.9%), Saudi Arabia (5.8%), UAE (5.1%), Qatar (4.1%), South Korea (4.1%), Malaysia (3.6%), Indonesia (3.2%), Russia (3%)

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




February 2016