The report issued by the internal affairs ministry said Japan’s population was 127.11 million as of October 1, 2015 — a fall of around 947,000 from the 2010 census, public broadcaster NHK reported.
Ministry officials said natural population reduction — the number of deaths surpassing that of births — eclipsed population growth driven by such social factors as an increase in foreign residents.
They declared that the country’s population is now in a declining trend.
Tokyo, Aichi, Saitama were among eight prefectures to see a population increase.
The remaining 39 posted a decline, including Osaka, where the headcount fell for the first time in decades.
Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima — three prefectures severely affected by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami — experienced a decline. Fukushima saw the largest drop of 115,000.