The United Kingdom, Italy and Japan are collaborating to build a new combat aircraft

This content was published on Dec 09, 2022 – 04:00

London, Dec. 9 (EFE). The United Kingdom, Italy and Japan today announced the formalization of an international alliance to develop the next generation of combat aircraft that should be operational by 2035.

In a joint statement, the three countries stressed the importance of the agreement, dubbed the Global Air Combat Program (GCAP), at a time of increasing threats and aggression.

In practice, the initiative involves the merger of the Japanese FX program, led by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), and the British-Italian company Tempest, in which the British aerospace company BAE Systems and the Italian Leonardo are involved.

The memorandum from London, Rome and Tokyo stated that the merger “will accelerate our advanced military capabilities and technological advantage, and allow us to deepen our defense cooperation, as well as scientific and technological cooperation.”

The design of the new fighter will ensure its “interoperability” with the military systems of the United States, NATO and other allies of the three participating countries in Europe, the Indo-Pacific region and the rest of the world.

The three governments expressed their willingness to work together “in a spirit of fairness”, sharing the benefits of working together while increasing their “sovereign capabilities”.

The first step of the program will be to agree on a “basic concept” for the new fighter and to prepare the necessary structures to begin the development phase in 2024.

During 2023, the UK, Italy and Japan must close the cost estimate for the project, agree on the economic contributions of each capital, and reflect those plans in their national budgets.

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British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Friday will visit the Royal Air Force facility in Koningsby (eastern England), home to some of the Typhoon fighters that have been the British air defense base for the past two decades.

“The security of the UK, both now and for future generations, will always be of paramount importance to this government,” Sunak said.

“For this reason, we must remain at the forefront of advancements in defense technology, outmaneuvering and exploiting those who seek to harm us,” the Prime Minister added. EFE

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