Local authorities in Japan are building online matchmaking services to help local singles find love, The Economist reports.
Many of the websites offer iju konkatsu, or ‘migration spouse-hunting’, helping people move to new regions for marriage.
One such region is Akita, a mountainous prefecture in the north of the country. It’s capital has just over 300,000 inhabitants, compared to 38,000,000 in the Greater Tokyo Area.
Rumiko Saito of the Akita Marriage Support Centre told the publication: “(…) we hope that more people from outside will marry someone from Akita to come and live here.”
Commentators often reference the Japanese ‘loneliness industry’, set against the backdrop of an ageing population and intense working culture.
By 2040. 40% of Japan’s residents will live alone. Over 500,000 citizens already live as hikikomori, or hermits, not leaving the house for years at a time in some cases.
Match Group has recently made an entry into a number of APAC territories, including Japan. There, it launched Pairs Engage, a service aiming to marry singles within one year.
Pairs and Tinder now dominate the dating app download charts in Japan. The latter grew 66% year-on-year, while competitor Tapple grew 6%.
Read more here.