LONDON, July 8 (UPI) -- Britain and Japan have signed agreements for joint research, development and production of defense equipment, and collaboration on information security.
The agreement was signed late last week in London by British Foreign Secretary William Hague and Japan's ambassador, Keiichi Hayashi.
"Japan is a key ally of the U.K. and we work closely together on many issues of global foreign and security policy," Hague said. "This [the Defense Equipment Cooperation Framework] is a groundbreaking agreement which will enable joint research, development and production of defense equipment.
"It will facilitate closer relationships between British and Japanese defense industries, support their endeavors to work collaboratively, and contribute to the already close security and defense co-operation between the U.K. and Japan, aimed at promoting global peace and stability."
The information security agreement also sets out the standards and arrangements for the security protection of classified information exchanged between the two governments, and will "assist" in implementation of the equipment framework, Britain's defense minister said.
The ministry said the first collaboration project is expected to take place in the area of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear protection.