Brief | Intelligent Investment

Accelerating Urbanization to Drive Long-Term Demand for Rental Housing in Japan’s Major Urban Centers

January 9, 2024 5 Minute Read

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  • On December 22, 2023, Japan’s National Institute of Population and Social Security Research (IPSS) announced new regional population projections. The new projections are based on the population census as of October 1, 2020 as reported by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, and aligns with the latest nationwide projections released in April 2023. The projection period covers every five-year period between 2020 and 2050, extended by five years from the previous projections announced in March 2018 which were based on the population in 2015.


  • The newly released projections suggest that urban concentration of the population in Japan will further accelerate in the coming decades. The proportion of the total population accounted for by the major 21 cities (20 designated cities plus the 23 wards of central Tokyo) was slightly below 30% in 2020. However, by 2050, this figure is expected to exceed one-third. As for the working-age population (15-64 years), the major 21 cities should account for more than 36% in 2050, up from approximately 32% in 2020. The new projections indicate a faster pace of concentration of the population in major cities, particularly for the working-age population, compared to the previous projections published in 2018.