The UK and Japanese governments have revealed plans to pursue the possibility of a joint exercise later this year.

The exercise could see participation of the Royal Air Force’s Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft, which is scheduled for deployment on a Five Powers Defence Arrangement Exercise.

Both countries also agreed to conduct research on the feasibility of a joint new air-to-air missile (JNAAM), with UK, US, and Japan military cyber analysts this year.

UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: "Japan is our closest security partner in Asia and I want to significantly deepen defence cooperation between our two nations.

"We will do that through joint exercises, reciprocal access to our military bases, military personnel exchanges and cooperation on equipment, including a new air-to-air missile."

"I want to significantly deepen defence cooperation between our two nations."

The countries will also conduct joint cyber and military exercises to strengthen information-sharing, while extending cooperation in cyber security, defence equipment, and technology. Japanese Minister of Defence H.E. Mr. Gen Nakatani said: "I am happy to reunite with Ministers Hammond and Fallon in Tokyo after gathering one year ago for the previous 2+2.

"Last year, the UK published the SDSR. In this, the UK reaffirmed its commitment to its presence as a global power. The SDSR highlighted Japan as the closest security partner in Asia, and I highly regard this statement.

"In the same year, we have reformed our legislation concerning peace and security. Through these processes, our two nations have confirmed the further commitment of the stability of the world."

The two countries have also agreed to cooperate on mine hunting in the Gulf, as well as improving amphibious capability and counter-improvised explosive device (IED) capability.

Image: Defence Secretary Michael Fallon and Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond during the visit to Japan. Photo: Copyright British Embassy / Michael Feather / Crown Copyright.