Australia’s Chief of Air Force has announced the signing of the Air Cooperation Framework with the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force formalising the two services’ long standing collaboration. The Framework provides a structure aligned to the over-arching Australia-UK Military Cooperation Framework and is based on shared platforms, workforces and like-mindedness.
Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld, Chief of Air Force said the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Air Force have enjoyed a rich history of working side-by-side. “We look forward to promoting closer cooperation as we introduce a range of common platforms and systems into service and support them in operations,” Hupfeld said. “Our forces share multiple platforms; from the venerable C-130 Hercules, to the very new F-35 Lightning, and to our future platforms like the MQ-9B SkyGuardian. All of our shared capabilities provide valuable opportunities for us to work together to achieve our capability and interoperability goals.”
Under the Air Cooperation Framework, Air Force and the Royal Air Force will enhance interoperability, harmonise activities and the development of doctrine. The agreement will also rationalise programs to leverage each other’s capabilities, share lessons, and mutually support activities from each other’s bases.
“We face an increasingly uncertain geostrategic situation within our region and welcome the UK’s renewed engagement in the Indo-Pacific,” Hupfeld said. “Exploiting areas of common ground between our Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Air Force will help us to respond to our countries’ respective national interests.”