The number of 18-year-olds in Japan totaled a record low of 1.06 million as of Monday, a government estimate showed, as the country continues to grapple with a falling birthrate.

The number of those that have reached Japan's legal adult age fell by 60,000 from 2023 and accounted for 0.86 percent of Japan's total population, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said Sunday.

Women dressed in kimono pose for a selfie at Tokyo DisneySea theme park in Urayasu near Tokyo on Japan's Coming of Age Day national holiday on Jan. 9, 2023.  (Kyodo) 

The year 2005, when the new adults were born, had seen the country's total fertility rate -- the average number of children a woman is estimated to bear in her lifetime -- fall to a record-low 1.26, later matched by that of 2022.

In Japan, the age of adulthood was lowered from 20 to 18 in April 2022 in a bid to encourage active social participation by youth.

The number of new adults hit a record-high 2.46 million in 1970. Following a decline, the figure surpassed 2 million in the early 1990s when those born between 1971 and 1974 amid a second baby boom reached adulthood. But the number has been on a falling trend since then.

The latest ministry data includes foreign residents living in the country for over three months.

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