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Due to Japan's low birth rate, its population falls every year. According to a recent VOA report (via Nippon Goro Goro), if the falling birth rate continues, Japan will need about 600,000 new immigrant workers each year to sustain economic growth. This will mean that the ability to communicate clearly in English will no longer be an exclusive concern of those wishing to work, study, and travel abroad; but instead it will become an increasingly valuable skill for all Japanese people to have.

# posted on 12/08/2003          

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