Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada announced plans by the authorities to conclude a contract with the United States for the bulk purchase of Tomahawk cruise missiles.
According to him, the purchase of missiles will be made through the “foreign military assistance” system, which is usually used in the supply of US-made defense equipment. The authorities hope that the contract will be signed as early as the 2023 financial year, which starts on April 1.
During a January meeting with US President Joe Biden, Fumio Kishida conveyed Tokyo’s intention to acquire US Tomahawk cruise missiles. It is assumed that Tomahawk missiles should become part of a program to increase the ability of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces to strike back at enemy bases. Before that, information appeared in the Japanese media that Japan wants to buy up to 500 of these missiles from the United States by 2027.
In mid-December, Japan adopted three key documents on defense and security: the “National Security Strategy”, which defines the main directions of foreign policy in the field of defense; “National Defense Strategy”, which refers to the goals and means of defense; “Defensive Plan” – it determines the overall cost of defense and the scope of armaments.
The documents also indicated an increase in Japan’s defense spending to the level of 2% of GDP by 2027. This is approximately 11 trillion yen ($81 billion). Military spending in the current fiscal year 2022 (ending March 31, 2023) amounted to 5.4 trillion yen ($40 billion), approximately 1.24% of GDP.