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Japan's science ministry is seeking to boost its budget, despite a government goal of reducing spending, Science reports.

The Ministry of Education (MEXT) has asked for a 21 percent increase to its budget, which would bring it to 1.17 trillion yen (US $10.54 billion), which Science notes could get knocked down during the review and negotiation process. In particular, the MEXT proposal would increase grants to academic researchers by about 8 percent, bringing it to 247 billion yen, while allocating 2.4 billion yen in funding for translating academic biomedical research into pharmaceuticals, Science adds. It notes that the proposal also includes large amounts of funding for a supercomputer, space research, Japan's contribution to an international effort to build a telescope, and a neutrino detector.

However, the Japanese cabinet has been discussing reducing discretionary spending in the country by about 10 percent as the country deals with slow economic growth and a declining tax base, according to Science. But, it adds that the Japanese government has also viewed science and technology spending as a boon for the economy.