Japan’s new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has called to increase the nation’s military capabilities. This is following growing concerns of threat from China and North Korea. Additionally, the Prime Minister cited North Korea’s development of missiles, which is believed to be able to reach Japan, as one of the various factors to why Japan should increase its defense budget. This call from the Prime Minister will face some backlash from both the public and other political parties within the government. One reason for this is that this call could possibly go against Japan’s war-renouncing Constitution, which limits the state’s use of force to self-defense. Also, some opposition has said that instead of putting money into the defence budget, more money should be put into Japan’s economic stimulus and social welfare.

For the Biden administration, this should be great news to hear. President Biden and Prime Minister Kishida have already talked about continuing their nation’s alliances and working together against China and North Korea. If Kishida manages to stay in office longer than his predecessor Suga, this may mean that Japan will start playing a bigger role against the U.S’s rival nations in East Asia. However, if nothing becomes of Prime Minister Kishida’s calls Japan may continue to play the same role that it has today with its alliance with the U.S.