US sees 2nd foreign buyer, to join Israel, for V-22 Osprey aircraft in 6 months

WASHINGTON - A second foreign country is expected to announce plans within six months to buy the V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor plane built by Boeing Co and Textron Inc's Bell Helicopter unit, the top general in the US Marine Corps said.
Marine Corps Commandant General James Amos declined to name the country that would join Israel in buying the large aircraft, but said this week that the deal should be announced during the next half year.
Sources familiar with the program said Japan would likely be that second buyer, noting that Japan's defense budget released in August requested funds for tilt-rotor aircraft. Over the longer-term, Japan is interested in 20 to 40 V-22s, according to the sources, who were not authorized to speak publicly.