Japan has listed out multi-billion procurement of military hardware including 2 destroyers, a submarine, F-35 aircraft, and the F-X indigenous fighter jet in the 2020 defense white paper released today.
Tokyo plans to acquire three P-1 patrol aircraft and 7 SH-60K patrol helicopters this year. It also plans to set up a Temporal Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Unit (Tentative name) and establish a Squadron for Aerial Refueling and Transport.
For the Navy, it plans to build two destroyers, a submarine and a minesweeping vessel, besides introducing unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs).
Partial refurbishment of Destroyer JS “Izumo” for takeoff and landing by F-35B is also on the cards. First reports hinting at the 248-metre ship's modernization surfaced two years ago. Possible refitting measures reportedly includes adding a curved ramp at the end of the flight deck, improving the deck's heat resistance against jet burners, and reinforcing the ship's air traffic control capability.
On July 9, the U.S. State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to Japan of 105 F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $23.11 billion. Japan had requested to buy 63 F-35A Conventional TakeOff and Landing (CTOL) aircraft and 42 F-35B Short Take-Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) aircraft. This is the single biggest foreign sale of the F-35 fighter jets. In preparation of the F-35B purchase, Japan has already started upgrading its Izumo helicopter carrier which is expected to house some of the STOVL jets.
Buying stand-off and SM-3 Block IIA missiles is also included. To fortify its territory, Japan will also modify its Patriot air defense system.
For the Army, procurement of 33 Type-16 mobile combat vehicles, 7 Type-19 155mm wheeled self-propelled howitzers, 3283 Type-20 5.56mm rifles and 323 SFP9 Striker Fired Pistols has been planned.