Japan has signed an accord to supply defense equipment and technology to Philippines alarmed by Chinese actions in South China Sea.
This is the first such Japanese defense pact in the region where the US allies have been alarmed by China’s aggressive advances in disputed territories.
Philippine Defence Secretary Voltaire Gazmin said the agreement he signed with Japanese Ambassador Kazuhide Ishikawa in Manila on Monday underpins the Asian nations’ “mutual desire to enhance our respective defence capabilities” and “to contribute to regional peace and stability.”
Gazmin says the accord serves as a framework for the transfer of defence equipment and technology, with the details being settled in future talks. Japan is initially offering a surveillance aircraft, he said without elaborating.
Japan and the Philippines have separately expressed alarm over Beijing’s increasingly assertive behaviour in disputed waters.