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Britain, Norway eyes F-35 collaboration

Sept. 9, 2013 at 12:12 PM
LONDON, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Britain and Norway are planning to collaborate in areas such as training, operations and sustainment of F-35 fighters.

The decision to explore collaboration, which follows a year of talks on their respective F-35 programs, was jointly announced following a meeting in London between British Minister for Defense Equipment, Support and Technology Phillip Dunne and Norwegian State Secretary Eirik Owre Thorshaug.

"While many decisions have yet to be made which will define the totality of the U.K.'s JSF program, it is clear that coordination and cooperation with like-minded allies such as Norway will offer many advantages in terms of shared knowledge, best practice and efficiencies," Dunne said. "The U.K. looks forward to exploring possibilities for collaboration on our approach to through life support and capability development with Norway over the coming years."

Added Thorshaug: "This will be the first time in nearly 60 years that Norway and the U.K. will operate a similar type of fighter aircraft, and this naturally opens up new possibilities for cooperation."

Norway will receive its first four F-35s from Lockheed Martin in 2015 and 2016. Britain will receive its first six in 2017.

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