Why 45% of Japanese Living Abroad Are Feeling Lonely?

Nearly 45% of Japanese nationals living abroad experience loneliness, according to a survey by the Japanese Foreign Ministry released on Monday.

This first-ever survey on the subject, conducted between October and December last year, found that 44.9% of respondents reported feeling lonely. 

Western Europe Has The Highest Ratio

The loneliness rate among Japanese abroad is 5.6 percentage points higher than the domestic rate, as shown by a Cabinet Secretariat study for fiscal year 2023 ending in March.

By region, Western Europe had the highest percentage of lonely Japanese nationals at 48.0%, followed by South America at 46.4%, and North America at 45.3%. 

Causes of Loneliness

The primary cause of loneliness was identified as a language barrier, cited by 31.6% of respondents, followed by cultural differences at 27.9%.

To address this issue, the ministry is working with nonprofit organizations to provide support, including loans for those needing financial assistance to stay abroad or return to Japan.

“We will use the survey results to consider further steps,” a ministry official stated.

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