Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen, and his British counterpart, Secretary of State for Defence Geoffrey Hoon, signed a Declaration of Principles for Defense Equipment and Industrial Cooperation on Saturday, Feb. 5.
The Declaration establishes principles for improved cooperation in a number of key areas of mutual interest. The new pact mandates cooperation on such matters as coordination of military requirements and acquisition processes, export procedures, protection of national security and defense technology information, Trans-Atlantic industrial partnerships, research and development, and reciprocal defense trade.
The DoD and the U.K. Ministry of Defense have been engaged in negotiations over the past 12 months to specify how to improve the long-standing cooperation across a broad spectrum of defense activities. These include strict enforcement of export policies for armaments and technologies, strong industrial security systems and compatible industrial security practices, close relationships in law enforcement and cooperation on industrial security matters and reciprocal defense market access.
The Defense leaders agreed to establish both policy-level and working-level groups of subject matter experts to develop further the principles underlying the Declaration of Principles, with a view towards establishing and implementing specific arrangements and agreements.