It's a sweet thing. This story leapt right out of Latest Posts and bit me right on the buttock!
China's entire plan to dominate the Western Pacific and the oil route between the Persian Gulf and Japan depended on a pliant Japan. The stupid little Chia Pet in Pyongyang has now queered the deal, and the Japanese are rearming in a big way.
DO NOT BE FOOLED!
This is the beginning of full throttle Japanese naval rearmament. Japan has come to the conclusion that they must assert themselves, lest the Koreans first, and the Chicoms later, assume that the Japanese are weak and soft. This generation of carriers is merely a testbed. The next generation will be in the CVN-X class of vessels, probably with electric-drive motors, a full air wing of IJN Fleet Air Arm aircraft. Do not be surprised if the Japanese and the Americans pool design teams to develop a "common carrier" plan.
This is not bad news at all. This is great and glorious news. The Chinese plans for the domination of the Pacific have been checked. If the People's Liberation Army Navy would be made short work of by the U.S. Navy, imagine how long they would last against both the Pacific Fleet and the Nihon Kaigun! No one knows this more than the Chinese admiralty.
Be Seeing You,
< /extreme sarcasm >
So, you want a budget-conscious aircraft carrier? What could be cheaper than buying one (or two) for "scrap" that are already built, that already have structurally sound landing decks, and then either refitting it/them or else designing an external towing system to push 'em around?