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Does Japan give nationality?


Japan is one of the most developed and prosperous countries in the world, with a rich cultural heritage and a strong economy. However, when it comes to citizenship and nationality, Japan has some unique rules and regulations that can be difficult to navigate. In this article, we will explore the question of whether or not Japan gives nationality, examining the country’s laws and policies on citizenship and naturalization.

Japanese Citizenship Law

The Japanese Nationality Act is the primary law governing citizenship in Japan. Under this law, Japanese nationality is acquired either by birth or through a process of naturalization. In general, those born to Japanese parents are automatically considered Japanese citizens, regardless of where they are born. However, the rules for naturalization are more complicated.

Japanese Snack Box

Naturalization Requirements

In order to become a naturalized citizen of Japan, an individual must meet certain requirements. These include having lived in Japan for at least five years, being over the age of 20, having a clean criminal record, and being able to support oneself financially. Additionally, applicants must renounce their previous citizenship.

The Naturalization Process

The process of naturalization in Japan can be lengthy and complex. Applicants must submit a range of documents, including birth certificates, marriage certificates, and proof of income. They must also pass a language proficiency test and an interview with immigration officials. The entire process can take up to a year or more to complete.

Dual Citizenship

Unlike some other countries, Japan does not allow for dual citizenship. This means that individuals who become naturalized citizens of Japan must give up their previous citizenship. Additionally, those born with dual citizenship may be required to choose which citizenship they want to retain by the age of 22.

Exceptions to the Rules

There are some exceptions to the rules around Japanese citizenship and naturalization. For example, those who are married to a Japanese citizen may be able to obtain citizenship more easily. Additionally, there are special provisions for those who were born in Japan but were not automatically granted citizenship.

Why Pursue Japanese Citizenship?

There are many reasons why someone might want to pursue Japanese citizenship. For example, it can open up new job opportunities and make it easier to travel and live in Japan long-term. Additionally, becoming a citizen can provide access to certain social benefits and protections.

Challenges of Obtaining Citizenship

While there are certainly benefits to becoming a citizen of Japan, there are also challenges involved in the process. For example, the language proficiency test can be difficult for non-native speakers to pass. Additionally, the strict requirements around criminal records and financial stability can be difficult for some applicants to meet.

The Importance of Citizenship

Citizenship is an important concept that is closely tied to identity and belonging. While it may seem like a bureaucratic process, obtaining citizenship can have profound impacts on an individual’s life and sense of self. It is important for all countries to have clear rules and regulations around citizenship in order to ensure fairness and consistency.

Japan’s Approach Compared to Other Countries

When compared to other countries around the world, Japan’s approach to citizenship is relatively strict. Some countries have more lenient requirements for naturalization or allow for dual citizenship. However, it is important to remember that each country has its own unique history and culture that shapes its approach to citizenship.

The Future of Japanese Citizenship

As Japan continues to evolve and change in the coming years, it is likely that the rules around citizenship will also shift. For example, there may be increased pressure to allow for dual citizenship or make the naturalization process easier for certain groups of people. It will be interesting to see how Japan adapts its approach to citizenship in response to these changing circumstances.


In conclusion, while Japan does give nationality through a process of naturalization, it has relatively strict rules around who can become a citizen and how they can do so. This can make it challenging for some individuals to obtain Japanese citizenship. However, for those who are willing to put in the time and effort required, becoming a citizen of Japan can provide numerous benefits and opportunities.

Can you become a Japanese citizen if you are not Japanese?

Foreigners can become Japanese citizens by going through the naturalization process.

Is Japan easy to get a citizenship?

In Japan, the process of obtaining citizenship as a foreigner is the longest compared to other countries. In order to be granted citizenship, you must have resided in Japan for approximately 5 years and obtain permission from the Justice Minister, which involves completing extensive paperwork and a lengthy process lasting between 6 to 12 months. This information was last updated on February 3, 2021.

What is a Japanese person’s nationality?

The Japanese are an ethnic group from East Asia who are native to the Japanese archipelago. They make up 97.9% of the population of Japan and are one of the largest ethnic groups in the world, with approximately 129 million people of Japanese descent globally.

What happens if a foreigner gives birth in Japan?

In Japan, if a non-Japanese person gives birth but is not married to a Japanese citizen, their child will not automatically become a Japanese citizen. However, if the mother reports the birth to her home country’s government office in Japan, the child can receive citizenship from the mother’s country.

Can an American have Japanese citizenship?

When individuals with dual nationality reach adulthood, they have to decide which nationality they want to adopt. Selecting Japanese nationality does not have any impact on their U.S. citizenship.

Can a foreigner get Japanese nationality?

To be eligible, individuals must have reached the age of 20 and have been living in Japan for at least five years. It is required that they demonstrate financial stability and independence and maintain good conduct and moral character throughout their stay. The application deadline is January 30, 2023.

It is important to note that Japan’s approach to citizenship is deeply rooted in its cultural and historical identity. Japan has a strong sense of national pride and a deep respect for tradition, which has influenced its approach to citizenship. Additionally, Japan has a relatively homogenous population, which can make it more challenging for non-Japanese individuals to integrate into society.

Despite these challenges, there are many success stories of individuals who have become naturalized citizens of Japan and built successful lives there. The process of obtaining citizenship can be difficult, but it is not impossible. With dedication and perseverance, it is possible for individuals from all backgrounds to obtain Japanese citizenship.

Furthermore, Japan has implemented policies in recent years aimed at attracting more immigrants to the country. These policies include creating new visa categories for foreign workers and streamlining the naturalization process for those who are already living in Japan. These changes reflect a growing recognition within Japan that immigration can bring many benefits to the country and its economy.

In conclusion, Japan’s approach to citizenship is complex and unique, but it reflects the country’s cultural values and historical context. While the process of obtaining Japanese citizenship can be challenging, it is not insurmountable. As Japan continues to evolve and change in the coming years, it will be interesting to see how its approach to citizenship and nationality continues to evolve as well.

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