8 Sep 2010

Economic cost of suicides tallied

10:32 am on 8 September 2010

The government in Japan says suicides and depression cost the economy almost 2.7 trillion yen ($US32 billion) last year.

The figures refer to lost incomes and the cost of treatment. The BBC reports it is the first time Japan has released such figures.

Japan has one of the world's highest suicide rates, with more than 32,000 people killing themselves last year. The number of suicides has been over 30,000 for 12 consecutive years

Prime Minister Naoto Kan sees it as proof of an economic and emotional downturn.

The government is setting up a task force to try to reduce the rate.