Japan is set to increase its defense budget for the eighth consecutive year to a record 5.3 trillion yen, or about 48.6 billion dollars.
The Cabinet on Friday approved the government's budget plan for the fiscal year that begins next April.
The defense budget is about 510 million dollars higher than the initial one for the current fiscal year.
About 23.4 billion dollars will be earmarked for spending in fiscal 2021 or later. The amount includes 100 million dollars in design fees for a next-generation stealth fighter jet that is due to succeed the aging F-2 model used by the Air Self-Defense Force.
Funds are also being allocated to remodel the Maritime Self-Defense Force's largest vessel, Izumo, into a de-facto aircraft carrier.
The cost of acquiring six US-made F-35B stealth fighters is also included in the budget. These F-35s are slated for use on the renovated Izumo.
Direct purchases of defense equipment from the US government are set to reach about 4.3 billion dollars. That's the third highest figure ever, but it is less than the record amount for the current fiscal year.