The UK, Italy, and Japan will work together to create a new artificial intelligence-powered fighter jet, according to UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.
The collaborative company will aim to increase security ties and generate thousands of jobs in the UK.
The nations will create a next-generation fighter that will eventually replace the Typhoon jet and is scheduled to go into service in the middle of the 2030s.
State of the art weaponry will be carried by the new fighter.
When Mr. Sunak visited RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire on Friday, he stated that the collaboration will “keep the country safe from the new challenges that we face.”
We’re one of the few nations in the world with the capacity to produce technologically cutting-edge combat aircraft, he claimed.
Work has already begun on the combat aircraft that will mix speed, stealth, cutting-edge sensors, and even artificial intelligence to support the human pilot when they are overwhelmed or under tremendous stress.
It might also be able to fire hypersonic missiles and fly without a pilot’s input if necessary.
But because producing such a sophisticated aircraft is very expensive – creating the F35 jet was the Pentagon’s most costly project ever – Britain has been hunting for partners.
Japan’s inclusion is crucial given that Italy was already on board and that Britain is forging deeper connections with allies in the Indo-Pacific area due to concerns about China.
Other nations could still sign up for the scheme. The United States, together with France, Germany, and Spain, are already collaborating on their own unique designs.
This deal has economic as well as security implications for the UK. It is hoped that the creation of a new fighter plane will lead to the maintenance and growth of thousands of jobs in the UK.
“The security of the UK, both now and for future generations, will always be of the utmost importance to this government,” said Mr Sunak before the visit to RAF Coningsby.
“As a result, we must continue to be on the cutting edge of developments in defence technology in order to outwit and outmanoeuvre those who would harm us. To emphasise that the security of the Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific regions are interdependent, we have announced an international partnership with Japan and Italy. By using the might of our globally competitive defence industry, we will safeguard us and our allies around the world, creating jobs while saving lives,” he added.
Labour’s shadow defence secretary, John Healey, stated that his party supported the alliance but issued a warning regarding training.
“Ministers need to explain how this fits into their larger plans for the RAF’s future, especially how they plan to avoid delays in fast-jet pilot training,” he said.