Japan signed a deal with the Philippines for the sale of 10 patrol boats and is to launch talks to export the P-3C reconnaissance aircraft and other military hardware, various media reported
The deal signed on Thursday for 10 patrol vessels is aimed to make more active patrols around South China Sea islands that are claimed by both the Philippines and China.
The export of other Japanese hardware, under an agreement signed by Abe and visiting Philippine President Benigno Aquino III, includes anti-submarine reconnaissance aircraft and radar technology. However, the details have yet to be discussed.
Abe said that Japan will provide further assistance to upgrade Philippine coast guard capabilities. The agreement, which focuses on defence and security cooperation, also includes economic assistance from Japan.
Meanwhile, Japanese media reported that a sale of the P-3C, originally designed by Lockeed Martin Corp and produced in Japan by Kawasaki Heavy Industries, would be a more fully developed military export than those currently being discussed.
The two countries also agreed to bolster exchanges between their militaries through defence talks and joint exercises, as well as in disaster relief efforts. Tokyo had a similar agreement with Malaysia last month.
Tokyo eased restrictions on exports of military equipment and technology last year.