Japan Looks to Export Defense Equipment to ASEAN Countries

Published By : 18 Aug 2014 | Published By : QYRESEARCH

For the first time since Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe decided to ease restrictions on the export of defense equipment in April, the government has planned to hold a conference hoping to pitch arms exports to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. The conference, which may be held in late September, will be conducted in Tokyo and will be the first gathering of Japan and ASEAN countries since April. 

Japan has, for nearly half a century, followed an embargo on arms export and the seminar will be a good opportunity to promote its vessels and aircraft, and to boost the security of as well as ties with ASEAN countries. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations includes Indonesia, Brunei, Laos, Cambodia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand and Singapore.

The Shinzo Abe government decided to upgrade its military over the next four years in this year’s budget and upped its defense expenditure by 3% to $49 billion in the current fiscal year.

The conference will be based on the theme of maritime security and comes in the face of growing concerns and criticism regarding China’s maritime actions. China raised its defense budget to $200 billion this year, second after the U.S. 

The Japanese government will also be looking to build business ties, contribute to international cooperation and strengthen Tokyo’s security interests. Countries who wish to buy arms from Japan will have to agree to a defense equipment transfer accord before Japan actually begins exports. Japan has already signed agreements to sell defense equipment to Britain, the U.S. and Australia.
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