Japan hopes to help Asean members cope with their ageing populations, reports said today.
It plans to launch a public-private consultation mechanism in the next fiscal year, according to sources.
Japan’s population is rapidly ageing, so it hopes it can use its experiences to help other countries handle the trend. Asean countries are also expected to see rapid population ageing in the future.
It is expected that the project will also allow Japanese medical and healthcare companies to more easily enter Asean markets.
According to the United Nations and other sources, Japan took 25 years for the number of people aged 65 or older to double from 7 per cent to 14 per cent of the population, as of 1995.
Vietnam is forecast to see the same shift in just 15 years, by 2033, and Indonesia in 17 years, by 2038.
Government officials and experts from Asean nations and Japan are set to discuss nursing care services in each country during the consultation. Nonprofit organisations and companies that provide nursing care are also expected to participate.
Souces said the situations in each Asean member country will determine whether facility-based or home-based insured nursing care services are emphasised when drawing up plans.
The Japanese government has included ¥15 million (€112,000, $124,000) for the project in budget requests for next fiscal year, and is considering holding such talks on a regular basis, the Yomiuri Shimbun said.
Japan has already helped Asean nations deal with their ageing populations through measures including the introduction of high-performance care beds to Brunei and Singapore, and providing nursing care instruction for a community in Malaysia.
But these initiatives have been on an individual level for each country, and the government hopes the consultatation will enable it to provide more comprehensive support for the entire region.
There is expected to be high future demand from Asean countries for beds and other healthcare and medical products made in Japan.