Nikkei reported online that Defense Minister Kono held talks with senior Keidanren officials today and exchanged views with them on how to reinforce the foundation of the nation’s defense industry amid the increasingly severe security environment around Japan. While noting that emerging military technology, such as AI-controlled drones, will pose a greater risk to national defense, Kono underscored the importance of greater R&D investment to head off such threats. The defense official also mentioned the need to export weapons to help maintain the viability of the nation’s defense contractors. This was reportedly the first time for a Japanese defense minister to hold discussions with Keidanren officials.
NHK carried a similar article, adding that the two sides agreed to coordinate closely to shore up the defense industry.