The leaders of Britain and France were expected to sign a groundbreaking treaty Tuesday on defense cooperation that would make their militaries more interoperable, UK Defense Secretary Liam Fox said.
The treaty would include changing the design of some aircraft carriers to allow both British and French planes to land, joint training exercises, and cooperation on unmanned aerial systems, a Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said.
A second treaty due to be signed Tuesday would see the two countries engage in nuclear cooperation, including building new testing facilities, said the spokeswoman, who could not be named in line with policy.
The treaties come two weeks after the British government announced deep cuts to the defense budget, with the armed forces losing 10 percent of uniformed personnel in the next five years.
"We're looking at a combined joint expeditionary force, we're looking at greater interoperability, coherence in military doctrine, we're looking to see where in our defense industries we can have better cooperation so that we're getting value for money in research and development," Fox told the BBC. "All of these things surely make sense in a world where our funding is not finite but the risks are increasing."
We're looking to see where in our defense industries we can have better cooperation so that we're getting value for money in research and development.
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