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28 Ocak 2013 Pazartesi

Defense Ministry mulls request to provide submarine technology for Australian Navy

January 28, 2013  By FUMIAKI SONOYAMA

Japan's Defense Ministry is weighing whether to share submarine technology developed by a contractor for the Maritime Self-Defense Force with the Royal Australian Navy, sources said.

Given that submarine technology is highly classified, doing so would signal strengthened cooperation among friendly nations in the Asia-Pacific region where the Chinese Navy has demonstrated a growing presence.

The sharing of military technology was made possible with the relaxation in 2011 of the three principles Japan had adhered to with regard to weapons exports. However, Japan has until now not shared such technology with any nation other than the United States.

According to high-ranking Defense Ministry officials, Australia sounded out Japan about getting submarine propulsion technology. Officials in Tokyo are now trying to determine what level of information to provide.

The request came on the heels of a visit in May 2012 to the MSDF Kure Base in Hiroshima Prefecture by a senior Australian official who inspected an advanced Soryu-class submarine.

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