Inpex Holdings Inc. will increase spending on overseas oil and natural gas projects by as much as 50 percent a year to keep pace with soaring material and engineering costs.

Annual spending on overseas projects may rise to as much as ¥300 billion over the next three to five years, compared with a capital expenditure forecast a year ago of about ¥200 billion, Chairman Kunihiko Matsuo, 72, said in an interview Friday.

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