As per the plans revealed for the new “Aukus,” based on a British design, the UK’s nuclear-powered submarine could double in size.
The UK prime minister, Rishi Sonak, pledged to his US and Australian counterparts to defend Indo-Pacific peace, given its importance for global security, to fight the rising threat from China
The three counterparts announced in Point Loma, San Diego, to make the new Aukus submarine seaworthy in the late 2030s Some of them will be produced in the UK by BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce, mostly in Barrow-in-Furness, and they will be based on a British design. The contract had been in the works for 18 months.
These new submarines would replace seven existing nuclear-powered UK vessels. More could subsequently be added, bringing the potential size of the fleet to 19.
Australia will become only the seventh such nation in the world to acquire nuclear-powered submarines as a result of the Aukus security treaty, which is, according to the military’s senior brass, the most important for Britain since the US assisted it in becoming one of the few nuclear powers in 1958.
Australia is anticipated to receive its submarine by the 2040s. To prepare Australia’s workforce, infrastructure, and knowledge base, British submarines will begin rotating there as early as 2027.
Several senior officers would begin training on US and UK submarine bases this year, as the US is planning to sell three Virginia class submarines and a further two if needed to Australia.
The three Aukus countries have stated that they have set the highest standard and are closely working with the International Atomic Energy Agency, as China resorts to raising concerns related to the project, stating it would have a “grave nuclear proliferation risk” and could violate an international treaty.
They asserted that the US and the UK have operated more than 500 naval nuclear reactors for more than 60 years, traveling more than 150 million miles together without issue.
Sunak, Joe Biden, and Anthony Albanese, the prime ministers of Australia and the United States, promised the action would promote “global security and stability” when speaking on Monday in California.
The three leaders, in a joint statement about growing concerns regarding military and economic hostility from China, stated, “For more than a century, our three nations have stood shoulder to shoulder, along with other allies and partners, to help sustain peace, stability, and prosperity around the world, including in the Indo-Pacific.”
“We believe in a world that protects freedom and respects human rights, the rule of law, the independence of sovereign states, and the rules-based international order.”
In 1957, when former US President John F. Kennedy visited San Diego and spoke on the value of liberty, peace, and stability, Sunak cited him as saying that the Aukus powers were “united by that same purpose.”
Targeting China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea, he stated they threatened to create “a world defined by danger, disorder, and division.”
Since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year, China poses the greatest threat to Britain, even though it is physically closer to that country. Nevertheless, defense experts predict that China will pose a greater threat.
Raising concerns that China’s surplus naval fleet could operate close to Europe’s doorstep if the Arctic ice caps continue to melt.
Several western nations worry that Taiwan’s upcoming elections might catalyze China to try to annex the island. Taiwan has elections next year.
The Aukus accord is not expected to have a domino effect; therefore, it is likely to stay a three-way trilateral partnership rather than enlist other nations.
The UK government is optimistic that it has attracted observers’ attention and that they would agree with the Aukus goals. More collaborative military drills may be one aspect of it, but it might also make people reevaluate how heavily they rely on Chinese trade and investment relations.
While Sunak declared this week that China represented an “epoch-defining challenge” to the international system, he has refrained from labeling the nation as a “threat” in the latest integrated defense review. It’s a good idea to have a backup plan in case your first one fails.
In an interview on Monday, he stated: “We don’t believe it’s on a predetermined course.”
China-related engagement is still “sensible and responsible,” according to Sunak. “But we can’t be blind to or naive to the challenges it poses,” he continued.
- Published By Team Timeswire