The National Security Council plans to take the lead in crafting Japan's military buildup — a move expected to give the Prime Minister's Office more say in selecting defense equipment, a government source said Saturday.
The aim of the new arrangement is to make the allocation of the defense budget more effective through top-down decision making, including for new security areas such as cyber and space. Under the current format, budget requests from the Self-Defense Forces are taken into account and coordinated, the source said.
The NSC, established in December 2013 under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, formulates Japan's key security policies, with its permanent secretariat set up in the Cabinet Secretariat. It is chaired by the prime minister and attended by the chief Cabinet secretary, the defense minister and the foreign minister to discuss mid- to long-term security policies.