MOSCOW, December 18 (Sputnik), Ekaterina Blinova – The Australian leadership is considering an arm deal with Japan to buy 12 submarines based on Soryu-class vessels.”Australia is considering buying top-secret technology from Japan to build a fleet of new generation submarines, a move that would risk reigniting diplomatic tensions with China only recently smoothed over,” Bloomberg reported.
The Australian reported that although Japan, Germany, France and Sweden “are all keen” to build the vessels for Australia, the Japanese manufacturers are “ahead of the others,” since they have the most experience building conventional submarines large enough to meet Australia’s needs.” Reuters also noted in November 2014 that Canberra was leaning toward buying new Japanese submarines, based on an advanced lithium-ion battery propulsion system.
Experts emphasize that the Australian-Japanese military deal is likely to aggravate tensions between Canberra and Beijing.
Dean Cheng, a research fellow at the US-based Heritage Foundation, deems that Beijing would undoubtedly qualify the deal as “the ‘black hand’ of Washington at work.”
“Japan is clearly stepping beyond its traditional interpretation of its pacifist policy, which China may see as opening the door to a more forceful role in Asia,” he said.
Full article: Top Secret Japanese Submarines Likely to Replace Australia’s Aging Fleet (Sputnik News)