Japan is planning to form a research center patterned after the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency that is intended to study civilian technologies for military applications, Reuters reported Wednesday.
Tim Kelly and Kiyoshi Takenaka write the research center is part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s effort to lift Japan’s statutory export ban on weapons and amend laws that prevent the country from helping allied forces in distress.
“The starting point is not to develop military applications, but civilian projects that may have eventually have military uses,” Satoshi Tsuzukibashi of business group Keidanren’s defense-production committee told Reuters.
Japan’s Cabinet Office will manage the research program and the Finance Ministry has yet to decide on the funding, which will be incorporated in a budget proposal for the fiscal year ending in April, according to the report.
Science and Technology Minister Ichita Yamamoto told a conference the research will cover security applications, Reuters reports.