Greater Tokyo, which includes Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama and Chiba Prefectures, recorded a net inflow of 126,515 residents in 2023, a 27% increase from 2022.

In Tokyo’s 23 wards, the net inflow reached 53,899, the first net increase in three years. For the Tokyo metropolitan area, the net inflow was 68,285, up 80% from 2022’s figure and close to the level of 82,982 recorded in 2019.

Meanwhile, Nagano, Ibaraki, and Yamanashi Prefectures switched to a net outflow as the initial trend of remote work seen in the pandemic appears to be waning. 40 of Japan’s 47 prefectures recorded a net outflow last year.

The government has set a target of eliminating the net inflow of population into greater Tokyo by 2027, but with the latest figures, this may be more challenging than originally expected. As the populations shrink outside of major metro areas, labor shortages worsen, especially in medical, nursing, and the public transport sectors.

Source: The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, January 30, 2023.