Shijal ChudasamaDecember 23, 2022

Japan announces record defense spending amid worries about regional security

Japan announces record defense spending amid worries about regional security

The cabinet's approval of a 20% increase in military budget represents a departure from the post-World War II pacifist self-defence stance.

In response to concerns over regional security and threats from China and North Korea, Japan will increase its defense spending for 2023 to a record 6.8 trillion yen ($55 billion), a 20 percent increase.

The budget for next April was agreed by the cabinet of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on Friday, totaling 114.4 trillion yen ($863 billion), mostly due to a significant rise in military spending and rising social security costs for a rapidly aging population.

This is a component of a contentious new national security strategy that seeks to raise Japanese defense spending to 2% of GDP by 2027.

The new spending goal, which is in line with NATO standards, will eventually increase Japan's annual budget to almost 10 trillion yen ($73 billion), making it the third-largest in the world behind the US and China.

In order to defend itself against escalating threats from North Korea, Russia, and China, who they believe may try to invade Taiwan, the policy intends to provide Japan a "counterstrike capability" that can anticipate enemy strikes.

According to South Korea's military, North Korea tested two short-range ballistic missiles on Friday, the most recent of a recent spate of weapons tests that occurred days after a joint air drill by Seoul and Washington.

The purchase of US-made Tomahawks and additional long-range cruise missiles that may strike targets in China or North Korea are included in Japan's budget, which is currently awaiting parliamentary approval. These missiles will cost 211.3 billion yen ($1.6 billion).

Additionally, according to defense sources, Japan will pay the United States 110 billion yen ($830 million) in the upcoming year for the hardware and software required to launch the Tomahawks as well as costs for the technology transfer and staff training.

Japan unveils record defence budget amid regional security fears
Japan unveils record defence budget amid regional security fears
Members of Japan’s Self-Defense Forces rappel from a helicopter during live-fire drills in the foothills of Mount Fuji, where an audience of more than 26,000 attended, in Gotemba, Japan, Aug. 27, 2017. As the North Korean missile threat grows, there are signs that Japan’s citizens are moving away from the country’s postwar pacifism. (Tomohiro Ohsumi/The New York Times)
Japan unveils record defence budget amid regional security fears
Japan unveils record defence budget amid regional security fears
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