The Defense Agency will request 5.0278 trillion yen from the 2002 general account budget, an increase of 1.8 percent from this year’s initial budget, according to a plan submitted to the Liberal Democratic Party’s defense panel Wednesday.

The increase is partly due to the agency’s plan to continue carrying out its five-year defense buildup program, introduced last year, by securing 317.8 billion yen of the 2 trillion yen flagged under next year’s budget for measures to implement structural reforms.

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