Photo/Illutration An artist’s rendition of an astronaut exploring the moon (Provided by NASA)

The government plans to land a Japanese astronaut on the moon in the second half of the 2020s who would become the first non-American to reach the surface of Earth’s natural satellite.

The lunar goal was announced at a Dec. 28 meeting of the Space Development Strategy Headquarters, led by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, that discussed revisions of Japan’s basic space policy.

It was the first time for Japan to specify a time frame for a human landing on the moon.

Japan has already decided to join the U.S.-led Artemis program aimed at exploring the moon and landing an astronaut there in or after 2025.

The last time a human has reached the moon’s surface was decades ago in NASA’s Apollo program.

NASA is now leading a project to launch a cislunar space station called Gateway.

Japan will contribute to the Gateway project by developing a new type of an unmanned logistics vehicle to transport goods to the space station as well as a manned lunar rover vehicle.