Japanese women`s life expectancy world`s longest for 25th year
Tokyo: Japanese women had the longest life expectancy in the world for the 25th straight year in 2009, with an average life span of 86.44 years, a Health Ministry report has shown.
Japanese men, along with their female compatriots, saw their average life expectancy register a record high for the fourth consecutive year at 79.59 years, but they fell to fifth
in the world from fourth in 2008, according to the report.
The latest data showed that average life spans increased from 2008 by 0.39 year for Japanese women and 0.30 year for Japanese men.
The Health, Labour and Welfare Ministry attributed the extension of life spans to improved treatment of the three major causes of death among Japanese -- cancer, cardiac disorders and strokes -- as well as pneumonia.
"If an influenza epidemic does not break out, the life expectancy (of Japanese people) is likely to extend further," a Ministry official said.
In the women`s list, Hong Kong came second at 86.1 years, followed by France at 84.5 years. Qatar topped the men`s list at 81.0 years, followed by Hong Kong at 79.8 years,
and Iceland and Switzerland at 79.7 years.
The gap in average life expectancy between Japanese men and women widened 0.09 year from 2008 to 6.85 years.
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