It is possible to naturalise after 5 years of residence in Japan. This is shorter than the 10 years required in principle for permanent residency.

However, Japan does not permit Naturalised Japanese Citizens to hold multiple nationalities, and requires those who naturalise to relinquish any other nationalities they may hold, unless that is impossible.

The benefit of naturalisation is that Japanese nationals live in Japan by right. Compare this to permanent residency, which is permission from the government to reside in Japan that can lapse or be revoked[1].

Naturalising may make the holder liable for the exit tax.

Rights available to Japanese Nationals that are not available to foreigners (including permanent residents)

This list is not exhaustive.

  1. Right of residence in Japan
  2. Ability to vote
  3. Ability to voluntarily pay into the Japanese pension and iDeCo while resident abroad
  4. ...

See Also


Many thanks to the following users for writing this article:

Adamu, Tkydon


  1. Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act, Revocation of Status of Residence, Article 22-4