Japan SDF Hiring Falls Far Short of Target in FY 2023

Politics

Tokyo, July 8 (Jiji Press)--The number of Japanese Self-Defense Forces personnel hired in fiscal 2023 totaled 9,959, only 51 pct of the Defense Ministry's target, the ministry announced Monday.

The share of SDF personnel recruited fell by 15 percentage points from the preceding year to hit the lowest level ever. The previous record low was 56 pct, marked in fiscal 1993.

The ministry planned to recruit a total of 19,598 personnel for the Ground, Maritime and Air SDFs in fiscal 2023, which ended in March.

The recruitment rate dropped by 19 points to 69 pct for general personnel serving as core SDF members under a permanent job contract system in principle, and by 13 points to 30 pct for fixed-term contract personnel. Both rates marked record lows since the permanent and fixed-term job contract systems were introduced, in fiscal 2010 and fiscal 2007, respectively.

The latest results may reflect the country's low birthrate, which has led to its youth population declining. Harassment cases revealed at the SDF are another likely contributor.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press