A new treaty formalizes defence co-opertation between the UK and Australia, parties agree to consider mutual frigate design.
The recently signed treaty in Perth sees the two countries working together in areas such as cyber security, defence reform, personnel exchange, equipment, and science and technology.
During the trip, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond visited the Australian Naval Base and BAE Systems shipyard in Perth where they discussed a range of issues relating to the sustainment and development of Australia’s submarine programme and future shipbuilding.
With both Britain and Australia due to build new frigates in the coming years, the Defence Secretary agreed with his Australian counterpart to explore the possibility of co-operation over mutual design work for the Royal Navy’s new Type 26 Global Combat Ship - a design that could meet the needs of the Royal Australian Navy.
Mr Hammond said:
"This government has made a concerted effort to renew and strengthen our relationship with one of our oldest allies. This defence treaty will drive forward closer co-operation on a wide range of issues, making our forces more interoperable and maximising our capabilities.
Areas of potential co-operation include future frigates, with the Royal Navy’s Type 26 design, a cutting-edge blueprint that could be the first of many opportunities for future collaboration. In times of budget pressures for all nations, it makes sense to maximise economies of scale and work with our friends to get the best value for money on all sides."