Japanese astronaut Takuya Onishi prior to the launch of the Soyuz MS space ship, Kazakhstan, July 7, 2016 (AP photo by Dmitri Lovetsky).

Editor’s note: This article is part of an ongoing WPR series on a range of countries’ space priorities and programs. Last month, the Japanese Ministry of Defense announced plans for a network of radar and optical telescopes that will track foreign satellites as well as space debris, which it hopes will be fully functional by 2022. In an email interview, Yuichiro Nagai, a researcher at the Policy Alternatives Research Institute at the University of Tokyo, discusses Japan’s space policy. WPR: What are Japan’s space capabilities, in terms of its space-industrial complex, and who are its major international partners, in terms […]