Honda Motor Co. factory that produces Giorno scooters in Otsu, Japan.
Photograph by Kyodo/AP
By Claire Zillman
November 30, 2015

Japan is known for its aging population and declining birth rate. Now one of its biggest companies is combatting those factors by raising its retirement age.

A report by Bloomberg on Monday said that next fiscal year Honda and five of its group companies will require its employees to work five more years—until they’re 65—before they can retire.

The change comes as Japan struggles with a changing demographic—it’s one of the fastest aging countries in the world and it also has one of the lowest birth rates—factors that are putting the squeeze on its workforce.

In addition to keeping workers on the job longer, Honda will introduce a work-from-home option and a partial-workday system. Both programs are aimed at increasing the share of women in the workforce. Last year, Kathy Matsui, chief Japan equity strategist at Goldman Sachs in Tokyo whose research Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has cited, told the Economist that workforces with a higher female participation rate are shown to also have higher birth rates

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