Suicides and other depression cases cost Japan's economy about 2.7 trillion ($45 billion) last year, the Government said yesterday, releasing such data for the first time in a bid to raise public awareness.

The figure included an estimated income of 1.9 trillion that could have been earned by working-age people who committed suicide in 2009.

"In addition to the human toll, we want to show the economic toll from suicides is very high and grave," said health ministry official Yukiko Nakatani.

In 2009, 32,845 people killed themselves, topping 30,000 for the 12th consecutive year.

Japan's suicide rate of 36.5 per 100,000 people for men ranked the second-highest among the Group of Eight leading nations.