5-speed listening (Adulthood - Level 4)

Japan lowers age of adulthood to 18






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Japan has lowered the age of adulthood for the first time since 1876. From 2022, teenagers will become adults at 18 - two years earlier than the current age. There are still things that will not change. The legal age for drinking alcohol, smoking and gambling will stay at 20. From 2022, 18-year-olds can marry without parental consent. They can also apply for loans. Transgender people over 18 will be able to apply to have their gender officially recognized.

The new law should help Japan's economy. More people will get married and start families. This will help the falling birth rate and ageing population. More financial freedom could provide more taxes to help the government pay for pensions and healthcare. Many of Japan's young people are more worried about how the traditional Coming of Age Day will change. This is a national holiday in which 20-year-olds wear traditional kimonos to celebrate adulthood.

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