Germany is a key ally for the UK – a fact that was formally recognised in November’s Strategic Defence and Security Review when Germany was elevated to a ‘tier one’ defence relationship, alongside the US and France.
Mr Fallon and Dr Von der Leyen discussed how the countries’ Armed Forces can develop their collaboration on operations, missions and training. This will be in evidence as Britain becomes a lead nation for the Transatlantic Capability Enhancement and Training (TACET) initiative, working alongside Germany and the US to deliver a robust military presence in Eastern Europe. Both countries will also work together to ensure NATO remains strong and united; tackle terrorist threats; build capacity outside of Europe; and enhance the interoperability between their Armed Forces.
The Ministers also announced a new UK-Germany ‘Ministerial Dialogue on Equipment and Capability Cooperation’. At the first meeting, in March, Ministers will discuss reducing support costs on common aircraft, notably A400M and Typhoon, and exploring future innovation.
The Defence Secretary also took the opportunity to welcome Germany’s expanded role in the counter-Daesh coalition, following last week’s meeting in Paris where it was agreed to intensify strikes against the militants’ infrastructure in Iraq and Syria.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:
Our defence review elevated Germany to a top tier ally, alongside France and the United States. We are already working closely together within NATO and in the fight against Daesh. Now I want to see more collaboration on operations, missions and training and deeper industrial cooperation.