Japan's government can't afford gifts for old peopleStaff writer ▼ | August 22, 2015
Japan's government has announced that it's cutting back on gifts for 100-year-old citizens, as the country's growing elderly population has made the practice too expensive to continue.
Asia Too many old citizens in Japan
When the program began in 1963, 153 individuals were given cups, but last year that number had risen to 29,357.
According to The Japan Times, costs for the initiative hit ¥260 million ($2 million) in 2014, and the country has subsequently decided to find a cheaper alternative — such as using a less-expensive material for the dishes, or simply sending a letter of congratulations instead. ■