Japan

Japan
日本国 (Japanese)
Nippon-koku or Nihon-koku
Anthem: 
君が代
Kimigayo
"His Imperial Majesty's Reign"
Government Seal
Seal of the Office of the Prime Minister and the Government of Japan
Projection of Asia with Japan's Area colored green
Territory controlled by Japan in dark green; territory claimed but not controlled shown in light green
Capital
and largest city
Tokyo
35°41′N 139°46′E / 35.683°N 139.767°E / 35.683; 139.767
National languageJapanese
Demonym(s)Japanese
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy
• Emperor
Naruhito
Fumio Kishida
LegislatureNational Diet
House of Councillors
House of Representatives
Formation
February 11, 660 BC
November 29, 1890
May 3, 1947
Area
• Total
377,975 km2 (145,937 sq mi)[1] (62nd)
• Water (%)
1.4 (as of 2015)[2]
Population
• 2022 estimate
124,214,766[3] (11th)
• 2020 census
126,226,568[4]
• Density
332/km2 (859.9/sq mi) (24th)
GDP (PPP)2022 estimate
• Total
Increase $6.110 trillion[5] (4th)
• Per capita
Increase $48,814 [5] (33rd)
GDP (nominal)2022 estimate
• Total
Increase $4.912 trillion[5] (3rd)
• Per capita
Increase $39,243 [5] (26th)
Gini (2018)Positive decrease 33.4[6]
medium · 78th
HDI (2021)Increase 0.925[7]
very high · 19th
CurrencyJapanese yen (¥)
Time zoneUTC+09:00 (JST)
Driving sideleft
Calling code+81
ISO 3166 codeJP
Internet TLD.jp

Japan (Japanese: 日本, Nippon or Nihon,[nb 1] and formally 日本国, Nihonkoku[nb 2]) is an island country in East Asia. It is situated in the northwest Pacific Ocean, and is bordered on the west by the Sea of Japan, while extending from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north toward the East China Sea, Philippine Sea, and Taiwan in the south. Japan is a part of the Ring of Fire, and spans an archipelago of 6852 islands covering 377,975 square kilometers (145,937 sq mi); the five main islands are Hokkaido, Honshu (the "mainland"), Shikoku, Kyushu, and Okinawa. Tokyo is the nation's capital and largest city, followed by Yokohama, Osaka, Nagoya, Sapporo, Fukuoka, Kobe, and Kyoto.

Japan is the eleventh most populous country in the world, as well as one of the most densely populated and urbanized. About three-fourths of the country's terrain is mountainous, concentrating its population of 125.5 million on narrow coastal plains. Japan is divided into 47 administrative prefectures and eight traditional regions. The Greater Tokyo Area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world, with more than 37.4 million residents.

Japan has been inhabited since the Upper Paleolithic period (30,000 BC), though the first written mention of the archipelago appears in a Chinese chronicle (the Book of Han) finished in the 2nd century AD. Between the 4th and 9th centuries, the kingdoms of Japan became unified under an emperor and the imperial court based in Heian-kyō. Beginning in the 12th century, political power was held by a series of military dictators (shōgun) and feudal lords (daimyō) and enforced by a class of warrior nobility (samurai). After a century-long period of civil war, the country was reunified in 1603 under the Tokugawa shogunate, which enacted an isolationist foreign policy. In 1854, a United States fleet forced Japan to open trade to the West, which led to the end of the shogunate and the restoration of imperial power in 1868.

In the Meiji period, the Empire of Japan adopted a Western-modeled constitution and pursued a program of industrialization and modernization. Amidst a rise in militarism and overseas colonization, Japan invaded China in 1937 and entered World War II as an Axis power in 1941. After suffering defeat in the Pacific War and two atomic bombings, Japan surrendered in 1945 and came under a seven-year Allied occupation, during which it adopted a new constitution and began a military alliance with the United States. Under the 1947 constitution, Japan has maintained a unitary parliamentary constitutional monarchy with a bicameral legislature, the National Diet.

Japan is a highly developed country, and a great power in global politics. Its economy is the world's third-largest by nominal GDP and the fourth-largest by PPP. Although Japan has renounced its right to declare war, the country maintains Self-Defense Forces that rank as one of the world's strongest militaries. After World War II, Japan experienced record growth in an economic miracle, becoming the second-largest economy in the world by 1972 but has stagnated since 1995 in what is referred to as the Lost Decades. Japan has the world's highest life expectancy, though it is experiencing a decline in population. A global leader in the automotive, robotics and electronics industries, the country has made significant contributions to science and technology. The culture of Japan is well known around the world, including its art, cuisine, music, and popular culture, which encompasses prominent comic, animation and video game industries. It is a member of numerous international organizations, including the United Nations (since 1956), OECD, G20 and Group of Seven.

  1. ^ 令和元年全国都道府県市区町村別面積調 (10月1日時点) [Reiwa 1 prefectures and municipalities ranked according to area (as of 1 October)] (in Japanese). Geospatial Information Authority of Japan. December 26, 2019. Archived from the original on April 15, 2020.
  2. ^ "Surface water and surface water change". OECD. Retrieved October 11, 2020.
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference cia was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ "2020 Population Census Preliminary Tabulation". Statistics Bureau of Japan. Retrieved June 26, 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d "World Economic Outlook database: April 2022". International Monetary Fund. April 2022.
  6. ^ Inequality - Income inequality - OECD Data. OECD. Retrieved July 25, 2021.
  7. ^ "Human Development Report 2021/2022" (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. September 8, 2022.
  8. ^ "Official Names of Member States (UNTERM)" (PDF). UN Protocol and Liaison Service. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 5, 2020. Retrieved May 21, 2020.


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