Japan’s LDP to Increase Military Spending

Days before the October 31 general election in Japan, the governing Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) will unveil its election manifesto, which includes a significant rise in defense spending. Prime Minister and LDP leader Fumio Kishida said he was determined to protect Japan’s territory and people’s security.

The move is considered a reaction to China’s military buildup and North Korea’s missile programs.

The LDP’s manifesto will reveal that the party aims to increase the defense spending from 1% of GDP to above 2%. It is expected to include plans to acquire ballistic missile interception within enemy territory.

The party also targets an increased Covid-19 vaccination rate. It aims to provide vaccines to everyone who is willing by early November.  The number of daily cases have been dropping in the country recently and a state of emergency was lifted this month; but a new wave is still threatening the people.

The LDP’s manifesto also states that it supports Taiwan’s inclusion in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Taiwan, right after China, applied last month to join the pact, which includes some major economies like Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Japan and Mexico. China, not recognizing Taiwan’s independence, opposes it from joining the pact.

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