Tokyo is seeking record military spending to show strength in the region and cut its trade deficit with Washington, the Nikkei business daily reported.
The Japanese government is planning on pumping at least 27 trillion yen ($240 billion) between April 2019 and March 2024 into its military, the report said without identifying its sources.
If true, it will be an 11.1 percent increase on the level of the last five years ($216 billion) and a vast uptick in the average spending, which will stand at 1.1 percent per year compared to a 0.8 percent average during the five years ending in March.
Meanwhile, new equipment purchases will be separated from personnel expenses, Nikkei reported, making it easier for Japan to buy more military equipment from the United States.
A report earlier this month said Tokyo was considering buying another 100 F-35 fighter jets and upgrading its destroyer into an aircraft carrier.
The order for the Lockheed Martin stealth fighters will worth more than $8.8 billion and will be used to replace Japan"s aging F-15s.
The mass expenditure and the order for fighter jets must be approved at a cabinet meeting on Dec 18, when Japan releases its new national defense program guidelines.
"Everything related is under consideration," said Japan"s Defense Ministry, without confirming whether or not the report is true.
Yu Qiang, a researcher of Japan studies at University of International Relations in Beijing said countries in the region should be cautious about Tokyo"s moves.
"Japan"s defense-related expenditures had been rising every year since Shinzo Abe became prime minister in 2012. ... Military spending should be less than 1 percent of Japan"s total GDP to prevent the country becoming a military superpower again," Yu said.cheap vip wristbandsathletic rubber braceletsrubber band bracelet maker instructionspersonalized heart braceletcustom fundraising bracelets