Japan, Britain, and Italy stated on December 9 that they would work together to create next-generation fighter aircraft by 2035.
Officials claim that Japan intends to replace the Air Self-Defense Force’s outdated F-2 fighter series with 100 brand-new aircraft by the year 2035. This new plane will take the place of 240 Eurofighters for the UK and Italy in the meantime.
According to the Japanese government, BAE Systems Plc. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. The creation of this new aircraft will fall under the purview of the UK.
The three nations promised to “create long-term defence collaboration” through the fighter aircraft development initiative in a joint statement. The cooperation initiative, according to the statement, not only supports the “military capabilities and technological advantages” of the nations, but also works to develop the supply chain and the defence industry. To create the aircraft “a pillar of a bigger combat air system with varied uses in many domains,” as stated by the three nations, is a shared goal.
Japanese Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada stated his hope that this chance for cooperation will serve as the cornerstone for peace and stability in both the Indo-Pacific region and Europe during a press conference in Tokyo.
Government representatives claim that Japan is also thinking about supplying brand-new fighter jets to other nations in the future. When the Japanese government updates its national security strategy next week, it is anticipated that it would make changes to the rules governing the sale of masks and defence equipment in order to expedite the export of weaponry. Japan’s pacifist Constitution has always maintained strong regulations.
The US Department of Defense and the Japanese Ministry of Defense released a joint statement that same day in which Washington endorsed Tokyo’s project to develop warplanes with its European allies.
Through a series of discussions on the potential of the self-driving system, which can be seen as a “component” to assist finish the new fighter jet programme, the two nations said that they had started a “major cooperation plan.” Washington and Tokyo announced that they would start working together actively to accomplish the following objective. According to Japanese officials, the idea would necessitate the study and creation of drones that could support the operation of new jets.
Japan initially wanted to work with US defence companies to create new fighter aircraft, but it opted to find alternative partners as a result of stringent US information security laws. Hamada claimed that one of the reasons an agreement was reached with Britain and Italy was because Washington had no plans to manufacture a fighter plane in the same timeframe.
Japan has never worked with nations other than the US on defence projects before. Japan has been supporting NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) member states like France and Germany’s security connections. At the NATO summit in June, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida emphasised the value of collaboration between Japan and NATO in addressing potential security challenges.