Japan and the UK are forming a unique partnership to develop their combat fighter aircraft—a partnership which may have important lessons for Australia’s aircraft procurement programs.


An unusual and historic military partnership is developing between Japan and the UK; they are becoming partners to share high-level technology for their respective fighters the FX and the Tempest. Already under consideration is the Jaguar System (a passive radio frequency detection  jamming and communication system), air-to-air missiles and Rolls Royce engines. This partnership is about developing an air power procurement strategy that will benefit both countries. The UK and Japan are both highly developed countries with a lot of air power related procurement experience.  This new partnership is a partnership of equals, and both nations should benefit. The UK sees Japan as an alternative to France and Germany for sharing fighter development costs. Japan has developed high-level air power technology—which the UK would like to access as a trusted partner. Consider the value to Australia of having the UK developing a partnership with Japan.