Japan’s Defense Ministry is asking for an 8.3% budget increase in 2020, its largest rise in more than two decades, in the face of China’s rapid military modernization and a looming threat from North Korea.
The Defense Ministry announced the draft budget on Wednesday afternoon, worth $51.9 billion in total spending (5.48 trillion yen), saying it would help the country’s military build its capacity to respond to new threats, including cyber, space, and electromagnetic warfare.
Among the new spending recommended by the Defense Ministry is $690 million to expand the Japan Self-Defense Forces’ space unit and Space Situational Awareness surveillance system and $340 million to build out its cyberspace defense unit and electromagnetic warfare capabilities.
Japan’s parliament still needs to approve the budget later this year. If approved, it will be the ninth consecutive annual increase in Japan’s military spending.