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Japan’s defense spending to hit new record in 2015 amid long-running dispute with China

January 14, 2015, 9:48 UTC+3 TOKYO

The Japanese government approved a record $818 billion state budget for the 2015 fiscal year

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TOKYO, January 14. /TASS/. The Japanese government approved on Wednesday a record $818 billion state budget for the 2015 fiscal year which runs from April 1 to March 31, a 0.4% increase compared with last year.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a press conference the budget will help achieve the key goal of restoring the country’s economy and rehabilitating the financial system.

Defense spending will hit a record $41.7 billion rising for a third straight year, amid a long-running maritime dispute with China.

Tokyo has already announced plans to purchase 20 maritime patrol aircraft, five crossover aircraft, and six stealth fighters.

Abe said social spending is expected to rise to $263 billion. The government also expects a 10% increase in tax proceeds to a maximum level over the past two decades - $463.2 billion.

According to the country’s Finance Ministry, by March 2015 Japan’s national debt is expected to hit $12 trillion.

The cabinet will later submit the budget to the parliament.

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