Japan and Australia have agreed to develop a framework for closer defence cooperation.
The deal, brokered by the foreign and defence ministers from both countries, could see Japan supply Australia with stealth submarine parts and designs.
“Ministers confirmed the substantial conclusion of negotiations on an agreement for cooperation in the field of defence equipment and technology,” the countries said in a joint statement.
In April, Japan dismantled a ban on military exports. Australia’s Defence Minister David Johnston said the new deal could see the two countries doing business together over stealth submarines or a maintenance program for the high-tech F-35 fighters they are both buying.
“We are taking small and determined steps down that path [of seeking the stealth submarine designs],” Johnston said, according to the ABC.
“We are looking to push the relationship a little further along, carefully and discreetly, as to how we might better interoperate.”
Australia’s Collins-Class submarines will not be replaced until around 2030, according to the report.
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