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Abe's cabinet approves record high defense spending


12-22-2016 19:17 BJT

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet has approved the country's biggest annual defense budget. 5.13 trillion yen, or U.S.$43.6 billion will be spent on defense for the fiscal year starting in April, the fifth consecutive annual increase.

Abe's new security laws went into effect this year, making it possible for Japanese troops to fight abroad for the first time since the end of the World War Two. Japan plans to boost maritime security, in particular in the East China Sea.

"For the next fiscal year, we will substantially increase the Coast Guard budget to over 210 billion yen, and at the same time we will increase the number of personnel by 200," said Abe.

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