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Japan looking for its own early warning aircraft

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World Aviation Defense and Security News - Japan
 
 
Japan looking for its own early warning aircraft
 
Japan's defence ministry wants to develop its own early warning aircraft, replacing US-made planes as the Chinese and Russian air forces grow more assertive, a report said yesterday. The ministry had asked for an initial 80 million yen ($700.000) from the finance ministry for the next fiscal year starting on April 1 to produce a mock aircraft, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported.
     
Japan's defence ministry wants to develop its own early warning aircraft, replacing US-made planes as the Chinese and Russian air forces grow more assertive, a report said yesterday. The ministry had asked for an initial 80 million yen ($700.000) from the finance ministry for the next fiscal year starting on April 1 to produce a mock aircraft, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported.
Future Japanese EW&C aircraft will replace aged E-2C Hawkeye airplanes
     

The paper said that military planners wanted to complete the development programme for planes featuring advanced surveillance radar by the mid-2020s, to replace Japan's US-made E-2C Hawkeye planes, which are based on a 1960s design.

Japan says it scrambled fighter jets more than 800 times in the last fiscal year to shadow intruding aircraft, mostly from China and Russia. That was the highest number of deployments since the final year of the cold war in 1989. Fears of a military clash have heightened since China last November declared an "air defence identification zone" over the East China Sea, which overlaps a similar Japanese zone and covers territory disputed by the two countries.

The two nations are at odds over the Japan-controlled, China-claimed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. China calls the uninhabited islands Diaoyu. They have also conflicted on differing perceptions of Japan's wartime aggression in Asia.

Yesterday's report comes after Japan lifted a self-imposed ban on weapons exports, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe looks to expand the country's diplomatic and military reach.