The UK’s Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston and Japan’s Chief of Staff of the Koku-Kietai, General Shunji Isutzu, have signed a Terms of Reference document after talks at DSEI Japan, which is happening this week (15-17 March 2023) in Tokyo.
This arrangement establishes a framework for Space Engagement Talks, which will facilitate future cooperation between the Koku-Jietai and UK Space Command. The cooperation will cover areas such as operational knowledge sharing, collaborative exercises and training and personnel exchanges. It also sets out a mutual desire for the sharing of space-related information.
“Japan is a valued international partner of the UK. We share common values and strategic interests, and we are working ever more closely in the face of global security challenges,” said Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston. “The space domain is critical to our shared security and prosperity, and a vital area of cooperation, underpinned by UK Space Command and the Koku-Jietai.”
Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston and Air Vice-Marshal Paul Godfrey were both in Tokyo for DSEI Japan. With an expected total of 10,000 visitors and 200 exhibitors from at least 15 countries, DSEI Japan is an opportunity for the UK to build and strengthen key relationships whilst promoting UK priorities in key areas such as air and missile defence, unmanned air capability, maritime, cyber and space.
“Our international partners are our greatest advantage in the space domain. This arrangement is an important step as we build our relationship with the JASDF, so that we can keep space safe, secure, and sustainable for the benefit of all,” added Air Vice-Marshal Paul Godfrey, Commander of UK Space Command.