Japan's population excluding resident foreigners declined to 124.8 million as of Jan. 1, 2019 at the fastest pace since the current survey began in 1968, affected by a record low number of births, government data showed Wednesday.
With fewer than 1 million births in Japan for the third straight year in 2018, the population dropped a record 433,239 from a year earlier for the 10th straight year of decline, according to the data released by the internal affairs ministry.
There were 124,776,364 Japanese in the country, while the number of registered foreign residents increased to 2,667,199, up 169,543 from a year earlier, the data showed.
The number of births fell to 921,000 last year and deaths totaled 1,363,564 for the sixth consecutive year of increase, with deaths outnumbering births for the 12th straight year.
The population decreased in 42 of the country's 47 prefectures, with Hokkaido logging the biggest fall of 39,461.
The country's three largest metropolitan areas overall -- the Tokyo area, Aichi Prefecture's Nagoya area and the Kansai area including Osaka in western Japan -- saw the first decline in population, which totaled 64,520,799.