TOKYO – Japan and the Philippines are set to begin discussing exporting Japanese military hardware to the Philippines, possibly anti-submarine reconnaissance aircraft and radar technology, amid increasingly assertive Chinese activity in regional seas.
An announcement on the talks is expected later Thursday when Philippine President Benigno Aquino and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe meet, focusing on Beijing's reclamation work in the South China Sea.
Japanese media reports say that P-3C anti-submarine reconnaissance aircraft and radar technology are possible sale items. A sale of the P-3C would be Japan's first full-fledged military export since Tokyo lifted its restrictions on military exports last year.
Under Abe's push to expand Japan's international military role, Japan has signed defense cooperation agreements with a number of countries to complement its cornerstone alliance with the U.S.