24 Dec '11, 11am

Japan plans to relax a decades-old ban on arms exports to stimulate their domestic arms industry

Japan plans to relax a decades-old ban on arms exports to stimulate their domestic arms industry

TOKYO, Japan - Japanese defence minister Yasuo Ichikawa said Saturday Tokyo plans to relax a decades-old ban on arms exports to allow Japanese firms to participate in multinational weapons development projects. The decision, expected to be announced Tuesday, is likely to stimulate the domestic arms industry while reducing the country's defence spending. "We will build a new framework," Ichikawa told reporters, stressing the need for lifting the ban as the "cost of highly capable defence equipment has increased". The self-imposed ban has been in effect since 1967, which critics say has resulted in Japan's military hardware becoming outdated, while rival China's military machine continues to grow and becomes increasingly assertive. Japan's policy on arms exports is a subject of intense interest to foreign defence contractors, as it could pave the way for greater internationa...

Full article: http://www.asiaone.com/News/AsiaOne%2BNews/Asia/Story/A1S...

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