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Japan Is Asking Young Adults To Drink More To Support the Country's Alcohol Businesses Young people in Japan are drinking less than in previous generations and the government misses the sales tax.

By Gabrielle Bienasz

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Young people in Japan are not drinking as much, and it's hitting the government in the coffers.

According to the BBC, the Japanese government has launched a "Sake Viva!" campaign to make drinking look "fun" and invite more entrepreneurs into the space. The country's national tax agency is encouraging young people to start businesses related to drinking, such as making wine or Japanese sake, specifically those aged 20 to 39.

The goal? More tax dollars from beverage sales, the BBC added.

Per Japan's national tax agency figures, consumption of alcohol is in decline, and, thus, making money from the sale of alcohol has been in decline. In 1999, the country drank over 9 million kiloliters of alcohol, which brought in about $1.8 trillion yen in taxable revenue. In 2020, Japanese citizens brought in just $1068.1 billion yen in taxes for the government.

From a percentage perspective, alcohol went from 5% in 1995 of total government revenue to 1.7% in 2020, per the BBC.

The outlet added that young people in Japan are drinking less than previous generations, which the government says has been due to the pandemic. The country is currently in another wave of the virus, according to The Japan Times.

The government has also attributed the decline to an aging population.

"While the aging population phenomenon is becoming more common in the world today, the problem is particularly acute in Japan," according to a 2016 University of Chicago Law School paper.

In 2014, the paper added, 24% of Japan's population was over the age of 65.

People can submit business proposals for "Sake Viva!" campaign until the end of September.

Gabrielle Bienasz is a staff writer at Entrepreneur. She previously worked at Insider and Inc. Magazine. 

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