TOKYO — Japan has laid out a road map to expand information gathering for missile defense and secure a safe operating environment for satellites under its first space security policy adopted Tuesday.
“Satellites support communications, disaster response and security, and international competition in these areas is intensifying,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said. “We will drastically expand the use of space-based systems for security,” he said.
The policy, covering the next 10 years, is based on the new National Security Strategy adopted in December.
The policy calls for advancing the development of missile detection and tracking technology in cooperation with the U.S., with an eye on North Korea. Artificial intelligence will be used to improve the accuracy of satellite image analysis.
The policy also calls for giving the Ministry of Defense and the Self-Defense Forces capabilities to disrupt other countries’ command-and-control and information communications systems. Japan will lead in crafting international rules for the use of space for security, it says.
On the operating environment for satellites, the policy says Japan will participate in the Combined Space Operations Center run by the U.S., the U.K. and others. The center’s mission includes monitoring space debris and the satellites of various countries.
The policy calls for strengthening cooperation between the Defense Ministry and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in promoting the use of private-sector technology. Expertise cultivated by the agency in space development will also be applied to security.